NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — He brought home the gold.
A 10-year-old from Mill Basin, Brooklyn recently took Wroclaw, Poland by storm, grabbing top honors at the 37th annual International Children’s Fencing Tournament Challenge.
Ethan Kushnerik competed against some of the best fencers in the world, and did so under some pretty unusual circumstances, CBS 2’s Alice Gainer reported Friday.
Ethan he likes to play around with his brothers and sister, enjoys math and art and, oh yeah, he’s pretty good at a very difficult sport.
“When people win in fencing they just scream,” he said.
Ethan was one of 19 children representing the United States, and competed with 142 fencers from all over the world in his category.
He said he trains four hours a day five days a week.
And he has a lot of medals.
Not bad for a kid who only picked up the sport two years ago.
Above Ethan’s medals is a sign that reads “never give up,” something he certainly didn’t do even as he dealt with a bout of the stomach flu on the morning of the international competition.
“By the time we got to the elevator, which is not that far, maybe a few steps, Ethan was out of breath,” said Vadim Kushnerik, Ethan’s father.
The elder Kushnerik said he wasn’t so sure that his son would compete, let alone go undefeated.
“Through the whole competition I kept not feeling good and I kind of didn’t even know what was happening,” Ethan said.
But in the end the humble, young boy came out on top.
“I’m very proud of Ethan’s accomplishments. I’m very proud watching him work hard,” Vadim Kushnerik said.
Ethan offered the following piece of advice to other would-be champs:
“Don’t give up on your fencing,” he said.
Even if you have the stomach flu.
Ethan said he hopes to pick up some more medals, and, who knows, maybe one day we’ll see him at the Olympics.
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