Parents of Olympic hopefuls coming to terms on not traveling to Tokyo

Japan 2020

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) – It is 5:00 a.m. on Saturday, May 1, and Stephanie and Allan Dinsmore have the coffee going, waking up early to watch their son, David, dive in the FINA World Cup event in Tokyo. It’s an event Stephanie originally had plans to attend, just like the Olympics.

“My first thought when he called me and said, ‘Mom, you aren’t going to be able to go’, I said, David, I don’t care if I go. I want you to go. And that’s what most important,” said Stephanie.

Due to the pandemic, Japanese officials and the Interational Olympic Committee made the decision to not allow international travelers. It’s a decision that families fully understand but for Stephanie and Allan, not being in Tokyo if David qualifies for the Olympics is tough.

“It’s a long journey. And David’s career, we’re unsure if there are 3 more years left in him or whether this is going to be it,” said Allan. “So, as a parent, it is difficult that we’ve attended so many meets throughout the career but potentially, hopefully, his last meet, we’re not going to be able to be there.”

And so instead, Stephanie and Allan go through the proverbial ups and downs from home.

“I feel much more connected when I’m there. I feel much more at peace when I’m there,” said Allan. “When you’re there, you can make eye contact and share the support that you can give. From the couch, you can’t share that support.”

The support is there in spirit though. If David is fortunate enough to qualify for his first Olympic Games, Stephanie, Allan and a host of family and friends will be watching, no matter what.

“I mean, it is what it is. It doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter. It’s what you do,” said Stephanie.

“Yeah, you just adjust and you sleep later when you can. You don’t want to miss the opportunity,” said Allan.

David will dive for a spot on Team USA next month at the Olympic Trials in Indianapolis.

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