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Anne Erickson

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TOKYO, JAPAN - JULY 24: Uche Eke of Team Nigeria looks on during Men's Qualification on day one of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Ariake Gymnastics Centre on July 24, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

Nigerian American gymnast Uche Eke is making history at the Tokyo Olympics, as he’s the first gymnast to compete for Nigeria at the games.

Eke, 32, is a University of Michigan gymnast. He has duel citizenship and decided to compete for Nigeria to bring a history-making moment for the country.

He spoke with CNN about his love for Nigeria, stating, “Personally, I always identified as a Nigerian. My dad always tells me: if someone says something good or how did you do this? How did you do that? He says, ‘because it’s African blood.’ So, I’ve been saying that for a while, as a joke, of course, but seriously at the same time.”

He added, “My name is Uche, and I will say that I didn’t like the name when I was growing up, because people would try to make fun of me and mispronounce it, and it was really getting on my nerves. But now people are getting used to the name Uche and they love it, and I love it too.

We’re proud of you, Eke!

Related: USA’s Women’s/Men’s Olympic Gymnastics Team

Anne Erickson's love for music drew her into radio, and she started shortly after graduating from MSU. She has a passion for rock and metal, plus local music. She also fronts the band Upon Wings. Email Anne at erickson@WRIF.com and tweet at her @AnneErickson!