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Golden girl Jessica deserves hero’s welcome

National treasure: Jessica Lewis returns to the Island today after her heroics in Toronto

Jessica Lewis returns to Bermuda today. Remember her? You know, the 22-year-old who set the pulses racing when she smashed the record in the T53 100 metres wheelchair race at the Parapan American Games in Toronto last Thursday.

Her performance was good enough for the gold medal, putting her in rarefied Bermudian company, with only Clarance Saunders (1990 Commonwealth Games, high jump) and MJ Tumbridge (1999 Pan Am Games, three-day event) having previously looked down on the world at a major games.

So what say you, Bermuda?

How do we show our appreciation for someone who has single-handedly kick-started the Paralympic movement on the Island.

We do not have so many champions in our midst that we can cherry-pick whom to acknowledge; there are but a select few. Jessica Lewis is now among them, and she will be coming to an airport near you very soon.

The challenge for our lawmakers, if they can take a break from the name-calling in the House of Assembly for a minute, is to determine what the right course of action should be from a grateful country.

Grateful we are because what Jessica has done, and how she has carried herself, should be uplifting for both the able-bodied athlete and those with a disability.

Overnight, she has become a national hero.