Olympic Name Game Heather Hopson August 10, 2012 Uncategorized Dear Diary, I could probably win a gold medal for playing the name game. From conception, I selected the name Caitlynn for my daughter-to-be. If she was a he, I was leaning toward Chase or Grayson. Despite my gut instinct, from February until July, I searched baby name books, websites and online forums. I came up with a laundry list of alternatives: Chloe, Claire, Farah, Harper, Makayla, Riley, Sadie, Sienna and Zara. My middle school students even offered up suggestions, mostly after celebrities or cars. But in the end, I went with my heart. Although it’s a common name, it has an uncommon spelling after my middle name Lynn. When I announced her name to family and friends, they would report to me when they met a Caitlynn in person or heard her name on TV. So, when the Olympic coverage aired, I got a few phone calls asking if we were cheering on American swimmer Caitlin Leverenz. As a first time mom, I now tuned in not only for the events but for the names as well. I made a mental note of cute and cool names for my future little champions. Recently, Huffington Post searched Nameberry’s Olympic baby names back to 1896 and published the most unusual and interesting past Gold Medalists’ names. Would you name your child something from this list? How about Aoyun? Well, over 4,000 babies in China have been named Aoyun, which literally translates to Olympic Games. The name became popular when China applied to host the Olympic Games back in 1992. It’s a pretty popular practice in China to name children after an event. Girls Annegret Richter — West Germany, track and field, 1972 Antonella Bellutti — Italy, racing cyclist, 1996 Beezie Madden (born Elizabeth) -– US, equestrian show jumping team, 2008 Clover Maitland -– Australia, field hockey, 1996 and 2000 Ellina Zvereva -– Belarus, discus throwing, 2000 Faustine Merret — France, windsurfing, 2004 Fernanda Ribeiro — Portugal, 10,000 meter race (established a new record), 1996 Fleur Mellor — Australia, track and field, 1956 Janica Kostelic — Croatia, Alpine skiing, 2002 Jearl Miles — US, track and field, 1996 and 2000 Liliya Nuritdinova -– Unified Team, track and field, 1992 Margitta Gummel — East Germany, shot put, 1968 Maritza Martén –- Cuba, discus throwing, 1992 Mildrette Netter — US, track and field, 1968 Oksana Baiul — Ukraine, figure skating, 1994 (at age 16) Ondina Valla -– Italy, track and field, 1936 Petra Felke -– East Germany, javelin throw, 1988 Picabo Street -– US, ski racing, 1998 Rhi (Rhiannon) Jeffrey — US, swimming, 2004 Sanya Richards — US, track and field, 2004 and 2008 Savatheda Fynos — Bahamas, track and field, 2000 Séverine Vandenhende — France, judo, 2000 Sonja Henie — ice skating, Norway, 1928, 1932, 1936 — became a movie star Susi Susanti (born Lucia) — Indonesia, badminton, 1992 Tenley Albright — US, figure skating, 1956 Torah Bright — Australia, snowboarding, 2010 Viorica Viscopoleanu -– Roumania, long jump, 1968 Wyomia Tyus — US, track and field, 1968 Xenia Stad-de-Jong — Netherlands, track and field, 1948 Boys Apolo Anton Ohno — US, speed skating, 2002 and 2006 Bevil Rudd — South Africa, track and field, 1920 Bode Miller (born Samuel Bode) — US, ski racing, 2010 Bruny Sorin — Canada, track and field, 1996 Cael Sanderson — US, wrestling, 2004 Commodore Cochran—US, track and field, 1924 Daley Johnson — (born Francis), UK, decathlon, 1980, 1984 Danyon Loader — New Zealand, swimming, 1996 Delfo Cabrera — Argentina, marathon racer, 1948 Duke Kahanamoku — Hawaii, swimming, 1912, 1920 (he was named not for Hawaiian royalty, but after his father who had been christened “Duke” following the visit of the Duke of Edinburgh to Hawaii in 1869). Eero Lehtonen — Finland, pentathlon, 1920 and 1924 Foy Draper — US, track and field, 1936 Gaston Reiff — Belgium, track and field, 1948 Gillis Grafström — Sweden, figure skating, 1920, 1924, 1928 Guinn Smith (born Owen Guinn) — US, pole vault, 1948 Harri Larva (born Harry) — Finland, track and field–28 Ilia Kulik — Russia figure skating, 1998 Ilmari Salminen — Finland, track and field, 1936 Ingo Weissenborn — Germany, fencing, 1992 Ivano Brugnetti — Italy, race walking, 2004 Jaak Uudmae — Estonia, long jump, 1980 Jacobus ”Jim” Thorpe — US–decathlon, 1912 Jasey-Jay Anderson — Canada, snowboarding, 2010 Josy Barthel (born Joseph) — Luxembourg, track and field, 1952 Kiko Sanchez (born Francis) — Spain, sailing, 1992 Livio Berruti — Italy, track and field, 1960 Lones Wigger -– US, shooting, 1965 Maurizio Damiliano — Italy, race walking, 1980 Mikio Oda — Japan, triple jump, 1928 Million Wolde — Ethiopia, track and field, 2000 Ollan Cassell — US, track and field, 1964 Paavo Nuirmi — Finland, track and field, 1920, 1924, 1928 Parry O’Brien — US, shot put, 1952, 1956 Rafer Johnson — US, decathlon, 1960 Sabin Carr — US, pole vault, 1927 Spyridon Louis — Greek, marathon, 1896 (first modern day Olympic marathon) Tamio Kono –- US, weight lifting, 1952, 1956 Thane Baker (born Walter Thane) –- US, track and field, 1956 Usain Bolt — Jamaica, track and field, 2008 Xeno Müller — Swiss, rowing, 1996 Leave a Reply Cancel Reply Your email address will not be published.CommentName* Email* Website Notify me of follow-up comments by email. 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