Laurie Hernandez’s mom, Wanda Hernandez can’t stop gushing about her daughter.
The mom of the 16-year-old gymnastics star shared an adorable story to USA Gymnastics about an encounter her daughter had with a fan during the P&G Championships.
“Last year, Laurie was getting on the bus after [P&G Championships] and the bus door closed. There was this little Latina girl who was standing by the bus with her parents and looked like she was ready to cry. I asked the girl who she was waiting for, and she said, ‘I’m waiting for Laurie. I really want her to sign my bag,’” said Hernandez.
Wanda took the girl’s bag and got her daughter to sign it. A year later, she ran into the family with the autographed bag in tow.
“The mother told me, ‘My daughter has been such a tremendous fan but when your Laurie signed her bag, we had to travel six hours to come and see her at Olympic Trials.’ How incredible is that?”
What’s even more incredible is that Laurie is the first Latina to snag a spot at the U.S. Olympic Gymnastics team in 30 years. Wanda who says that Laurie is "very proud of being a second generation Puerto Rican", is impressed with the outpour of support from the Latino community.
“What I'm noticing is a lot of Latina families who were not previously following gymnastics are so excited to see Laurie,” said Wanda.
And as for that moment when she and her husband found out that that their daughter was going to Rio? Wanda said that they were beaming with pride.
“We were just so happy,” said Wanda. “It is such an honor that Laurie and her teammates can represent the USA.”