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Olympic champion Gabby Douglas coming to Gary

U.S. gymnast Gabrielle Douglas displays her gold medal during artistic gymnastics women's individual all-around competiti2012 Summer Olympics Thursday Aug. 2

U.S. gymnast Gabrielle Douglas displays her gold medal during the artistic gymnastics women's individual all-around competition at the 2012 Summer Olympics, Thursday, Aug. 2, 2012, in London. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)

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Updated: October 7, 2012 10:14PM



Olympic champion gymnast Gabrielle Douglas will appear at an Oct. 15 event held in her honor at Gary’s Genesis Convention Center.

Douglas, 16, captured gold medals in the team event and the individual all-around at this summer’s Olympic Games in London. Douglas became the first African-American to win the all-around event, and she’s the first U.S. gymnast to win gold in both events. Douglas started her formal gymnastics training at age 6 in her hometown of Virginia Beach, Va. Two years ago, she moved to Des Moines, Iowa, to train with elite coach Liang Chow.

Douglas’s Gary ties are extensive. Her mother, Natalie Hawkins, grew up in Gary, and her grandfather, Theodore Hawkins, and other family members still live in Northwest Indiana.

Local government officials will pay tribute to Douglas’ success at the dinner and tribute, which is sponsored by the Gary Chamber of Commerce. The event will start at 6 p.m. at the Genesis Convention Center. Advance tickets are available for $25, and there will be a limited number of autographed photos available to the public during the event.

Tickets are available for purchase at 885-7407, or e-mail Executive Director Chuck Hughes at chughes@garychamber.com.



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