Swimmer Ryan Murphy Wrote a Letter to His Parents at 8 Years Old Declaring His Olympic Goals – Now He's a Gold Medalist

"I hope my swimming life continues and I become an Olympian when I grow up," an 8-year-old Ryan Murphy back in 2003

Image
Photo: Xavier Laine/Getty

American swimmer Ryan Murphy dreamed big as a child, and now his goal has been achieved.

The 21-year-old athlete picked up the first gold medal of his career when he won the 100-meter backstroke Monday night in Rio, something he’s been working toward since he was at least 8 years old.

NBC shared a handwritten note Murphy gave his parents over a decade ago, announcing his quest for Olympic glory.

“I hope my swimming life continues and I become an Olympian when I grow up,” wrote Murphy back in 2003. “I hope I will break records. I want to be the best swimmer in the world.”

The note also included an adorable handmade drawing of himself with a gold medal.

RELATED VIDEO: Road to Rio: Ryan Lochte’s Insane Olympic Diet

For more of PEOPLE’s Olympic coverage, pick up our collector’s edition, The Best of the Games, on sale now.

Although Murphy’s swim didn’t break the world record, he did set a new Olympic record with a time of 51.97 seconds. His win also continues a streak of Team USA taking home the gold for the event in every Olympic Games since Atlanta in 1996.

“That was a really fast final,” Murphy said in a statement through USA Swimming, according to NBC. “Everyone stepped up their game, and I was lucky that my game was a little bit better tonight. I’m super happy with the result, and it hasn’t really sunk in yet.”

Fellow American Olympic rookie David Plummer earned the third place spot with 52.40 seconds, setting a record of his own – the oldest medalist ever in the 100-meter backstroke at 30 years and 304 days old.

Murphy will continue his quest to break world records in the 200-meter backstroke on Wednesday.

Related Articles