Tirupathi to Tokyo: Revathi Veeramani struggles through poverty and reaches to Olympics 2020
Orphaned at the young age of 7, Revathi Veeramani and her sister were raised by her grandmother who was a daily wage worker in the small village of Sakkimangalam, near Madurai in Tamilnadu.
Her neighbours & relatives told K Arammal, her grandmother to send Revathi to work so she could support the family or at least marry her off so that she wouldn't be a burden. But Arammal ignored them all, fully determined to ensure that her granddaughters received the proper education and provide them with opportunities to follow their dreams.
It was only in class IX that her physical education teacher saw that she could run fast and encouraged her to take part in zonal and district competitions. During a zonal meet at the MGR Race Course Stadium in Madurai in 2014-15, she took part in 100m dash and ran barefoot as buying a pair of shoes was a luxury her family couldn't afford. That was where she met K Kannan, the coach who helped change the course of her future. Not only did Kannan coach Revathi without charging a fee, but he also helped her get free admission at Lady Doak College, Madurai.
In 2021, Revathi, employed as Travelling Ticket Examiner (TTE) with the Indian Railways topped the selection trials of the 4x400m relay with a personal best time of 55.53 seconds, paving her way to her first Olympics.
Indeed a story of battling odds, poverty and numerous hurdles, common to many Indian sportsmen who dare to dream but often do not have the means! On July 30, 23-year-old Revathi Veeramani will stand at the starting line of the 4x400 m relays wearing the Indian jersey, at the Tokyo Olympics 2021, a moment that she has been fantasising in her head over and over again for the last few years.
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Kailon applauds Veeramani’s true spirit of being a champion! We wish & pray she finds her #thehappinessformula in her quest for success at the Tokyo Olympics 2020 and make India proud again!