Fayetteville Native Takes 7th in Paralympics 100-Meters, Will Race In 200-Meter Dash Friday
Fayetteville native Jonathan Gore finished seventh in the 100-meter dash in the 2021 Paralympics on Monday in Tokyo -- the first of two races he will run.
The Concord University assistant track and field coach, and former student standout, was celebrated on the Athens campus this morning.
The Athletics Department hosted a watch party to show support for Gore.
About 20 people from the Concord community joined to cheer on Gore via television as he ran in the 100-meter final. Supporters clapped, cheered and took photos on cell phones as his name was announced and he took his mark.
Those rooting for Gore included current students, local residents, a few folks from the athletic department along with Mike Cox, Concord’s head track and field coach.
“Just seeing someone that you've coached that you now work with, get on that stage, you know, what he's gone through to get to that point -- is just remarkable,” Cox told West Virginia Public Broadcasting.
Gore was a standout runner at Concord University from 2013 to 2017. Shortly after graduation he lost his leg in a lawnmower accident, but Cox, his former coach, said Gore wasn’t ready to give up.
“At the hospital, they just cut his leg off. I'm crying,” Cox said. “And he just looked right at me and said, ‘I'm going to the Paralympics, coach.’ And here we are.”
Gore qualified on Sunday for the final 100 meter race. Cox says Gore's running time -- which earned him that seventh place finish -- was one of his best. The strongest chance at a medal for Gore though, will come later this week.
“I knew the 100 was gonna be harder than the two for him,” Cox said. “I mean, other than his finish today, everything was good. He ran the third fastest time here in the last year. I think the 200, he's gonna do some damage in this (200-meter race).”
Gore will race in the 200-meter preliminary round Friday evening.