Entertainment Sports Brittany Bowe and John Shuster Lead Team USA During Opening Ceremony's Parade of Nations: 'So Cool' "This is an absolute honor of a lifetime," Olympic speed skater Brittany Bowe said during the Opening Ceremony's Parade of Nations at the 2022 Winter Olympics By Jason Hahn Jason Hahn Jason Hahn is a former Human Interest and Sports Reporter for PEOPLE. He started at PEOPLE's Los Angeles Bureau as a writer and reporter in 2017 and interviewed the likes of Kobe Bryant, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Tom Brady. He has a B.A. in English from the University of California, Berkeley, and a Master's degree in Journalism from Columbia University. He previously worked for Complex Magazine in New York City. People Editorial Guidelines and Nicholas Rice Nicholas Rice Instagram Twitter Nicholas Rice is a Staff Editor for PEOPLE Magazine. He began working with the brand as an Editorial Intern in early 2020, before later transitioning to a freelance role, and then staff positions soon after. Nicholas writes and edits anywhere between 7 to 9 stories per day on average for PEOPLE, spanning across each vertical the brand covers. Nicholas has previous work experience with Billboard, POPSUGAR, Bustle and Elite Daily. When not working, Nicholas can be found playing with his 5 dogs, listening to pop music or eating mozzarella sticks. People Editorial Guidelines Published on February 4, 2022 08:21 AM Share Tweet Pin Email Photo: Lintao Zhang/Getty Images Three-time Olympic speed skater Brittany Bowe and five-time Olympic curler John Shuster led Team USA during the Opening Ceremony for the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics. On Friday morning, Bowe, 33, and Shuster, 39, served as flag bearers for the team during the Parade of Nations at Beijing's National Stadium, also known as the "Bird's Nest." There, the athletes walked to a selection of international classical music. During the Opening Ceremony, Shuster and Bowe spoke with NBC News about getting to lead Team USA and what the honor meant to them. "Leading this amazing group of athletes, this is so cool," said Shuster. For more on the 2022 Winter Olympics, listen below to our daily podcast on PEOPLE Every Day. Added Bowe: "This is an absolute honor of a lifetime. I can't think of a more powerful and uniting moment as an athlete and as an American. And it's an absolute honor to lead Team USA into the Opening Ceremony." The NBC broadcast also showed glimpses of Shuster and Bowe's families cheering them on stateside, with Shuster's family in Superior, Wisconsin, and Bowe's in Ocala, Florida. Matthew Stockman/Getty Images Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories. Bowe was selected to replace elected flag bearer Elana Meyers Taylor, a 37-year-old bobsledder who has won medals in the past three Winter Olympics, in the ceremony after Taylor tested positive for COVID-19. Shuster made history as the first curler to carry the U.S. flag during the Opening Ceremony, according to USA Curling. "Being elected as one of the flag bearers is a tremendous honor," Shuster said in a press release about his selection. "When thinking back to my Opening Ceremony experiences, I cannot help but be so proud to lead Team USA into an Olympic Winter Games. Joining the incredible group of Team USA leaders, especially since it was chosen by my Team USA teammates, is one of the greatest honors of my sporting career." Erin Jackson on 'Amazing' Friendship with Olympic Teammate Brittany Bowe, Representing Team USA David Ramos/Getty Images In all, the U.S. Olympic team has a delegation of 223 athletes. An inspirational film called "I Dare You," narrated by actor and former WWE superstar Dwayne Johnson, aired at the start of NBC's coverage of the ceremony. "It's my honor to once again be asked to participate in the presentation of the Opening Ceremony. And on behalf of our country, I will proudly introduce our U.S. Olympians to the world as they take that first step of defining their legacy," Johnson said in a statement prior to the event. 12 Outstanding, History-Making Black Winter Olympians Johnson previously introduced Team USA during NBC's coverage of the Tokyo Olympics last summer and previewed the athletes to watch in the Tokyo Paralympic Games. RELATED VIDEO: Still Grieving Father's Death, Skiing Sensation Mikaela Shiffrin Focuses on Beijing At the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics, Olympic luger Erin Hamlin was picked to lead Team USA during the Parade of Nations. Beijing also hosted the 2008 Summer Olympics, where 15,000 performers filled the stadium floor during that year's Opening Ceremony. Chinese filmmaker Zhang Yimou, who directed the 2008 Opening Ceremony, told the Washington Post that the 2022 event would feature only 3,000 performers. "In 2008, the Olympics was a brilliant stage and chance for our country to show ourselves," Yimou said. "It's different now. China's status in the world, the image of the Chinese, and the rise of our national status, everything is totally different now." To learn more about all the Olympic and Paralympic hopefuls, visit TeamUSA.org. Watch the Winter Olympics, beginning Feb 3, and the Paralympics, beginning March 4, on NBC.