Lumbee Member is on the U.S. Gymnastics Team
Published August 4, 2016
RIO DE JANEIRO — Ashton Locklear (Lumbee) is in Rio de Janeiro part of the U.S. gymnastics team. She is there as an alternate – and fill in if needed.
Her parents are Terry and Carrie Locklear. Her father is a self-employed construction worker and her mother is a registered nurse. The family lives in Hamlet, North Carolina, about 90 miles southeast of Charlotte.
Last month, before she left for training in Texas to be with the team, she talked with Native News Online. She expressed her gratitude to Indian Country for all of its support and said she will never forget it.
She answered five questions:
How old were you when you realized you wanted to make the USA Olympic team?
I started gymnastics at age 2 because I watched the 2000 Olympics with my mom and I knew I wanted to go to the Olympics.
Beyond contributing to the success of Olympic competition for TEAM USA, what are you most looking forward to doing in Rio de Janeiro?
I am not sure how much time we will have outside of Olympic village, but I look forward to being with my team mates and doing everything we can to make our supporters proud. I love learning about and experiencing other cultures, so I look forward to any opportunity to do that while I am there.
What motivates you to be consistent and disciplined to train as hard as you do?
I keep my focus on my goals and my dreams. I understand there will be mishaps, distractions and injuries, but I believe if you set your mind to it, you truly can accomplish what your goals. You have to dig deep inside and know you can and will find a way, if you put in the hard work and stay committed.
What is are your career plans?
I plan to continue with the USA Team for the next year and participate in the 2016 Tour of Gymnastic Champions that kicks off in September and goes through November.
You are already in inspiration for Indian Country. What is a message you would like to give to Native youth about achieving their goals?
To believe in yourself first and have faith and when you do you’ll find that all things are possible. Keep dreaming and setting goals, but know that you have to take action and put in the hard work and when you feel like you want to give up, know you have more strength than you can imagine. You deserve to live your dreams.