Krysta Palmer and Jian Li You were fêted by the Nevada athletic department Monday before leaving for Tokyo where Palmer will attempt to become the third Wolf Pack alum to win an Olympic medal.
Fans gathered outside Lawlor Events Center to show their support to Palmer, the two-time Mountain West diver of the year who is the first Wolf Pack alum to make the U.S. Olympic diving team. Palmer will compete in the synchronized 3-meter springboard with partner Alison Gibson and the 3-meter individual springboard after winning both events at the Olympic Trials in June.
Palmer thanked her coach, You, and her former trampoline coaches, along with her parents, family, teammates and the University of Nevada for helping turn her into an Olympic diver. Growing up in Carson City and an alum of Douglas High, Palmer couldn't be more grateful for her hometown's support.
"I would not be the diver I am today if I didn't know how to be a daredevil," Palmer said. "Huge, huge, huge thank you to my coach Jian Li. She took me from the very beginning. I also want to say thank you so much to my community. This is something that actually really gets my heart because my community has always been so supportive of me. I'm just so thankful for everybody that's contributed to my journey. When I was young, a lot of the expenses were out of my parents' pocket, and that was hard for us going through that time. The community that surrounds me has given to this dream of mine."
Palmer will become the first woman in springboard diving history to compete in two events at a single Olympic Games in Tokyo. You also is making history, becoming the first female on Team USA's diving staff to represent at an Olympic games.
"I'm just proud of our coaching staff," Nevada swim coach Brendon Bray said. "Jian Li, it's just in my opinion, she's the best in the country. So to have her here in Reno is a really special thing. The sky's the limit for Krysta. I don't think anybody in the world can say, 'I expect to win a gold medal,' but the sky's the limit, and I think if she does her thing, anything can happen for her. She's got to be the most rapidly improving diver over the past eight years, especially over the last year, of anybody in the world."
Palmer will compete in the synchronized 3-meter springboard on July 25 and the 3-meter individual springboard on July 30. Opening ceremonies begin on July 23rd on NBC.