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Updated: Wed, 14 May 2014 10:10:55 GMT | By CBC News, cbc.ca

Speedskater Gilmore Junio thanked with crowdfunded medal



Canadian speed skater Gilmore Junio stepped aside to let Denny Morrison race the 1,000 metres during the Olympics. Morrison would win a silver medal. Adrian Wyld/Canadian Press

Canadian speed skater Gilmore Junio stepped aside to let Denny Morrison race the 1,000 metres during the Olympics. Morrison would win a silver medal. Adrian Wyld/Canadian Press

Speedskater Gilmore Junio made worldwide headlines when he stepped aside from the men's 1000 metres at the 2014 Sochi Olympics so Canadian teammate Denny Morrison could compete, a selfless act for which Junio today received a special commemorative, crowdfunded medal. 

Morrison, who's from B.C., fell during an earlier qualifying round, and after Junio stepped aside, went on to win a silver medal. 

"One of the main reasons why I made my decision was to have — to share a medal moment with Canada and have something people can relate to," Junio told Andrew Nichols in an interview on CBC News Network. 

The move to give Junio a medal started with Toronto design agency Jacknife, which led a social media campaign called "Thanks Gilmore" to raise funds through Indiegogo.com.

Junio , a Calgary resident, was awarded the medal in a ceremony at King Edward School in Kitchener, Ont., whose students provided an outstanding level of participation.

The campaign had exceeded its $7,000 goal by Wednesday morning, reaching $7,562. Children at King Edward brought loonies to school, and were able to "fill our bucket," a student said.

"It's definitely going to be a pretty humbling day for sure, getting this medal from the guys from Jacknife and receiving it from the kids who helped [crowdfund] the medal," said Junio. 

In accepting the medal, Junio said: "Denny and I were pretty good friends before, and now I guess we have a good story to tell."

The medal is made out of silver to represent Morrison's medal, maplewood to represent Canada, and gold, for Junio, according to Jacknife. 

"It obviously means a lot," said Junio.

Correction : An earlier version this story wrongly reversed the speedskater's first and last names. His name is actually Gilmore Junio. (May 14, 2014 9:24 AM)

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