Simone Biles Makes History After Receiving This Special Honor from the U.S. President

It's certainly been a good year for Simone Biles. After taking home another two medals at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics last summer, the 25-year-old gymnast announced her engagement to Jonathan Owens this past February, which she's been celebrating with plenty of romantic trips around the world.

Now, it looks like Biles has another reason to get pumped: U.S. President Joe Biden just named the gymnast as one of the 17 recipients of this year's Presidential Medal of Freedom. As a result, the athlete has made history as the youngest person to receive the honor.

The Medal of Freedom is one of the highest civilian awards in the United States, and it is presented in order to recognize “exemplary contributions to the prosperity, values, or security of the United States, world peace, or other significant societal, public or private endeavors.”

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In a press release that was shared by the White House, they wrote, “President Biden has long said that America can be defined by one word: possibilities. These seventeen Americans demonstrate the power of possibilities and embody the soul of the nation—hard work, perseverance, and faith.”

For Biles's writeup, they said, “Simone Biles is the most decorated American gymnast in history, with a combined total of 32 Olympic and World Championship medals. Biles is also a prominent advocate for athletes’ mental health and safety, children in the foster care system, and victims of sexual assault.”

Along with the gymnast, Biden also selected Sister Simone Campbell, Julieta García, Gabrielle Giffords, Fred Gray, Steve Jobs, Father Alexander Karloutsos, Khizr Khan, Sandra Lindsay, John McCain, Diane Nash, Megan Rapinoe, Alan Simpson, Richard Trumka, Wilma Vaught, Denzel Washington and Raúl Yzaguirre.

What an incredible honor. Congrats, Simone!

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Associate Editor, News and Entertainment

Joel is the Associate Editor for News & Entertainment and has been reporting on all things pop culture for over 5 years. Before working at PureWow, he served as a Features...