20 Team Canada Olympic Moments of Pride

During each Olympic Games, Canadians from every corner of the country put their national pride on full display, cheering on every Team Canada athlete as they all make us proud in their own distinct ways.

Some do it by winning a medal, while others make an impact with their story or their sportsmanship.

From sharing an Olympic moment with a sibling to reaching the podium after a traumatic injury to scoring an epic gold medal-winning goal, here are just a few Olympic memories that have made us all so proud to be Canadian since our country first hosted the Games at Montreal 1976.

Sidney CrosbyVancouver 2010

Sidney Crosby celebrating

Canada’s Sidney Crosby celebrates his game-winning goal against the United States at the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games on Feb. 28, 2010. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson

You could hear cheers from every home and sports bar across the country when Crosby scored the “Golden Goal” at Vancouver 2010. A moment engrained in fans from coast to coast as we all let out a scream and a sigh of relief watching him get the shot.

Tessa Virtue and Scott MoirPyeongChang 2018

Team Canada PyeongChang 2018 Tessa Virtue Scott Moir ice dance goldTessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Canada win ice dance gold at the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic Winter Games on February 20, 2018. (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/COC)

We’re not crying, you’re crying. The duo, who had skated together for 20 years, shared their last competitive dance in 2018. The emotional ending made them the most decorated figure skaters in Olympic history, and we are lucky to call them Canadians.

Alex Bilodeau – Vancouver 2010

Ale embracing his brother smiling

Canadian moguls star Alex Bilodeau captured the hearts of all Canadians at Vancouver 2010 when he embraced his brother, Frédéric, following his gold medal performance. Bilodeau has called his brother, who has cerebral palsy, an “inspiration”. SCREENCAPTURE / NBC

The Bilodeau brothers stole the hearts of all Canadians at Vancouver 2010. Their bond was felt by everyone when Alex spoke about his biggest supporter, his brother, Frédéric, after winning Canada’s first ever Olympic gold on home soil. Throughout everything, the love that the two brothers showed throughout Alex’s Olympic career is priceless.

Daniel IgaliSydney 2000

Igali wiping away tears on podium

Canada’s Daniel Igali wipes away a tear after having won a gold medal in wrestling at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games. (CP Photo/ COC)

In his Olympic debut, Igali made all of us at home so proud as he became Canada’s first Olympic wrestling champion. It wasn’t just seeing him on top of the podium that made this moment so great; it was the moment he had with the Canadian flag after the match.

Igali who was born in Nigeria, showed his appreciation for Canada, dancing around the flag in celebration before kneeling down and kissing the flag. It made us all a little emotional and proud to have Igali represent the country that welcomed him as a refugee.

Silken LaumannBarcelona 1992

Laumann rowing in taped leg

Silken Laumann, with her right leg wrapped from the ankle to the top of her calves, rows in single sculls at Barcelona 1992.

As incredible a comeback story as we’ve ever seen. Just 10 weeks out from the Games, Laumann’s right leg was shattered in an on-water accident and she was told by doctors that she may never compete again. But despite her diagnosis, undergoing multiple surgeries, and needing a cane to walk, Laumann competed in Barcelona and against all odds won bronze.

Joannie Rochette – Vancouver 2010

Skater's hands in prayer up to the sky

Canada’s Joannie Rochette reacts after her free program at the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver, British Columbia. (AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev)

It’s hard not to get choked up when thinking about this moment. Just two days after her mother passed away, Rochette decided to skate in the short program. As the whole country stood behind her in support, Rochette would go on to win bronze. A powerful moment for Canadians and one Rochette knows her mom would have been proud of.

Andre De GrasseRio 2016

Bolt and De Grasse smiling as they cross the finish line

Canada’s Andre De Grasse (left) and Jamaica’s Usain Bolt share a laugh at the finish line as they set the two fastest times in the 200m semifinals at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Wednesday August 17, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn

Don’t know about you, but our hearts skipped a beat watching De Grasse sneak up on the fastest man in the world. The 200m semifinal finish between De Grasse and Usain Bolt was one we won’t soon forget, after Bolt light-heartedly scolded him for the unwanted surprise. The fact that De Grasse returned from Rio with three medals in hand, well that was the cherry on top.

Justine and Chloé Dufour-LapointeSochi 2014

Canada's Justine Dufour-Lapointe and Chloe Dufour-Lapointe holds hands before climbing

Canada’s Justine Dufour-Lapointe (R) and Chloe Dufour-Lapointe holds hands before climbing on the podium after winning the gold and silver medals in the moguls at the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

A moment that gave us all chills – certainly not because it was cold in Sochi – but because we saw two sisters sharing the podium together. The gold-silver finish was historic and emotional, not just for the family, but for everyone.

Mark Tewksbury – Barcelona 1992

Swimmer sitting on lane rope cheering

Mark Tewksbury celebrates his victory on July 30, 1992. (Dave Buston)

Watching Tewksbury in the 100m backstroke final, you couldn’t be blamed for thinking that maybe gold wasn’t in the books for Canadian swimming that year. He was in the middle of the pack off the start and a half a body-length behind the leader with half a pool length left.

But in the last 15m, he played some impressive catch-up that got us on our feet, jumping and cheering when he touched first with an Olympic record. The underdog became the victor and his splash celebration is one that fans have not forgotten.

Cindy KlassenTurin 2006

Klassen holding up all 5 medals

Cindy Klassen holds her five medals won at the Turin 2006 Olympic Winter Games.

Our neck would be tired if we had to carry around five medals from one Olympic Games. Called the “Woman of the Games” by then-IOC president, Jacques Rogge, Klassen was no stranger to the podium at Turin 2006. We all watched in awe as she skated to a gold, a silver and three bronze medals – the best ever single-Games performance by a Canadian Olympian.

Sprint Stars – Atlanta 1996

“If you’re a Canadian, you have to love Saturday nights in Georgia.” Broadcaster Don Wittman shared our sentiments after first witnessing the 100m world record by Donovan Bailey, and then the following weekend, the gold medal victory by Bailey, Glenroy Gilbert, Bruny Surin, and Robert Esmie in the 4x100m relay. The 1995 World Champions had been underestimated by many, but they handed the Americans the defeat at their home Games.

Alwyn Morris and Hugh FisherLos Angeles 1984

Alwyn Morris holds an eagle feather on the Olympic podium alongside Hugh Fisher

The kayaking duo reached the top of the podium in the K-2 1000m, a moment that every Canadian athlete dreams of. While standing there, Morris, a member of the Mohawk nation from Kahnawake, held an eagle feather after receiving his medal – a symbol that honours his Canadian heritage and his grandfather who inspired him as an athlete.

Women’s Swimming – Rio 2016

Rio 2016 ended a 20-year Olympic medal drought for Canadian women’s swimming – and in a very big way. Six medals, the most won by Canadian swimmers since 1984, were highlighted by Penny Oleksiak’s gold in the 100m freestyle. Two of her historic four medals came in the 4x100m and 4x200m freestyle relays, as she and Taylor Ruck became the first Olympic medallists ever born in the 2000s. Not to be forgotten were the backstroke bronzes by Kylie Masse and Hilary Caldwell.

Carol Huynh Beijing 2008

Crying listening to national anthem on podium

Carol Huynh after winning the gold medal in 48kg women’s wrestling at the Olympic Games in Beijing, China, Friday, August 15, 2008. THE CANADIAN PRESS/COC – Mike Ridewood

Making it to the Olympic Games comes with a lot of time and sacrifice, which rings true for Huynh. Watching Huynh, the daughter of refugees from Vietnam, win Canada’s first women’s wrestling gold medal was special, but even more so was her reaction on the podium. We don’t think there was a dry eye anywhere as we watched her cry as the Canadian flag was raised and the anthem played.

Justin Wadsworth – Sochi 2014

coach helping skiier

Russia’s Anton Gafarov is helped by Canada’s cross-country coach Justin Wadsworth after crashing in the men’s cross-country skiing sprint free semifinals during the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games on February 11, 2014. Getty Images/Kirill Kudryavtsev

In true Canadian fashion, cross-country skiing coach Justin Wadsworth didn’t hesitate to help an opponent. When Russian skier Anton Gafarov broke one of his skis after a fall, Wadsworth rushed over to give him a spare he’d been carrying – an act of compassion and sportsmanship that made us super proud.

Sara Renner – Turin 2006

Beckie Scott, left, and Sara Renner pose with the Canadian flag as they display their silver medals

Canada’s Beckie Scott, left, and Sara Renner pose with the Canadian flag as they display their silver medals after the medal ceremony for the Women’s Cross Country Team Sprint at the Turin 2006 Olympic Winter Games in Pragelato Plan, Italy, Tuesday, Feb 14, 2006. Sweden won the gold medal. (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini)

Canada was on the receiving end of a similar gesture eight years earlier – and responded with a pretty sweet thank you. When Renner’s pole broke, a medal seemed like a fleeting dream. But then Norwegian coach Bjørnar Håkensmoen handed over one of his, giving Renner and teammate Beckie Scott the boost they needed to win team sprint silver. In recognition of his act of kindness, Canadians sent Håkensmoen five tons of maple syrup – equal to over 7000 cans.

Lawrence LemieuxSeoul 1988

Lawrence Lemieux smiling while wearing his life jacket

Canada’s Lawrence Lemieux competing in the yachting event at the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul. (CP PHOTO/ COC/ Cromby McNeil)

When Lemieux spotted a couple of Singaporean competitors in trouble after their boat capsized, he didn’t worry about holding onto his second-place finish. He left his race to rescue the pair. He may not have won gold, silver or bronze, but was awarded the Pierre de Coubertin medal for sportsmanship.

Mark McMorris – PyeongChang 2018

Team Canada PyeongChang 2018 Mark McMorris bronze

Team Canada’s Mark McMorris reacts after taking over first place in the men’s snowboard slopestyle competition at Phoenix Snow Park, PyeongChang, South Korea. (Photo by David Jackson)

Fans may have been more nervous to watch McMorris compete at PyeongChang 2018 than he was. After a back country snowboarding accident in 2017 that resulted in multiple injuries, including a ruptured spleen, collapsed lung, and fractured pelvis, his future was unsure. What made his recovery story even more amazing was watching him stand on the podium, receiving his second straight slopestyle bronze.

Jon Montgomery – Vancouver 2010

Montgomery celebrating with equipment in hand

Jon Montgomery celebrates on the podium at Vancouver 2010

What better way to celebrate an unexpected victory than with a nice cold beer? That’s exactly what Montgomery did after winning gold in skeleton. In all honesty, we don’t blame him—we too would probably have a few beers to celebrate if we were Olympic champs.

Greg Joy – Montreal 1976

Joy over the pole in high jump

Greg Joy of Vancouver clears the high jump during Olympic finals competition Aug. 11, 1976 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Fred Chartrand

Joy became the Canadian hero from the first Olympic Games here at home. The high jumper won silver on the second last day of the Games – the first Canadian high jumper to reach the Olympic podium since Los Angeles 1932. The moment in the rain was immortalized for years in CBC’s nightly “O Canada” sign-off, allowing Canadians to relive it over and over.