Middletown welcomes home local Olympian Kayla Harrison - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Middletown welcomes home local Olympian

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Kayla Harrison Kayla Harrison

Middletown native Kayla Harrison is getting the star treatment in her hometown.

The first American to ever win an Olympic gold medal in judo made her first stop in Middletown since her win in London.

"I just knew she was going to win," said her mom Jeannie Yazell.

"I just expected she would win because I've known it for years that she was going to win."

Harrison spent time Tuesday afternoon visiting her former high school and talking with students about making goals and achieving them.

"This is the highlight of my life, there is never going to be another feeling like but coming back here and sharing it with my family and my friends and all of Middletown, it's been really really great," said Harrison.

A victim of sexual abuse at age 13 by her judo coach, Harrison is now an outspoken advocate for sexual abuse survivors.

"This sport has been so good to me," said Harrison. "It has changed my life...for awhile it changed my life for the bad and then it changed my life for the good."

Kayla attended Middletown schools through the 10th grade before moving to the Boston area for her last two years of high school.
 
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