As the Paralympic torch comes closer to the finish line, president Lee Hee-beom of the Organizing Committee for the 2018 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (POCOG) took part in the Rio 2016 Paralympic Torch Relay as a torchbearer.
On September 7 (local time), the day of the opening ceremony of the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games, president Lee carried the Paralympic flame in Rio’s captivating South Zone, Leblon.
POCOG has been dedicated to use the torch relay as a platform to celebrate the Paralympic values and inspire people from all walks of life while promoting the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic & Paralympic Games.
In particular, Lee served as a "messenger of PyeongChang" promoting the upcoming Winter Games to local residents of Brazil as well as spectators and stakeholders gathered from all over the world.
Lee said, “The Paralympic Torch Relay has a historical significance for Koreans, since the 1988 Seoul Paralympics was the first Games to ever stage the Paralympic Torch Relay. Therefore, we have an obligation to promote and incorporate the values of the Paralympics while preparing for the upcoming Games in 2018.”
The 2016 Rio Paralympic Torch Relay has traveled five major cities after beginning in the capital, Brasilia from September 1 to 7. Among the 700 torchbearers were medal-winning Paralympians and individuals who have dedicated their lives to helping people with impairments.
The Heritage Flame, lit in the birthplace of the Paralympic Movement, Stoke Mandeville, will combine with others travelling to Rio from across Brazil to ignite the flame which marks the start of the Paralympic Games on September 7 at the Maracanã Stadium.