Farewell From Russia, With Love

After 17 days of intense competition, The Olympic Flame was finally extinguished in Sochi, Russia.  With an astounding $51 Billion investment, Russia’s president Vladimir Putin spared no expense in improving the sleepy Black Sea town of Sochi before the athletes and cameras arrived.  No doubt Russia is eager to show their internal growth since their break away from communism in 1991.

Sochi Olympics Closing Ceremony
Vladimir Putin waves goodbye at the Sochi Olympics closing ceremonies.
Image by Darron Cummings/AP.

Mascots and the Parade of Nations set the mood for the audience to remember the highs and lows of the past 17 days.  Celebration for Russian culture was the centerpiece of the ceremony as “Goodbye, Moscow!” was played and the Russian national anthem was sung.  Speeches from the president of the organizing committee, Dmitry Chernyshenko, and Thomas Bach IOC president, were devoted to the games as the Olympic flame was blown out.

Sochi Olympics
The competing countries flag’s were on display at the Sochi Olympics closing ceremonies. Image by Marko Djurica/Reuters.

With years of training and preparation, gifted athletes from every background gathered together to celebrate their love of the games.  Russia came in 1st with a total medal count of 33 and a gold count of 13. The U.S. followed with a total medal count of 28, followed by a gold count of 9. In third, Norway came home with a total of 26, and a gold count of 11.

Fireworks closing ceremony sochi olympics
Fireworks light up the arena as artists make a formation in the shape of the Olympic Rings during the closing ceremony of the 2014 Winter Olympics, Sunday, Feb. 23, 2014, in Sochi, Russia. Image by Gregorio Borgia/AP Photo.

Medal counts in no way show the amount of dedication and athletic ability any of the Sochi Olympians possess. In the end, the Olympics is a time to celebrate friendly competition and global unity.

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