Olympic golden girl Aly Raisman has been receiving support from her hometown of Needham and beyond including from U.S. Sen. Scott Brown as the Bay State prepares for the Olympian s homecoming.
It s just a dream come true. She s put so much time and effort and sacrifice into going and working and giving up everything. It was just so nice to see her get what she wants, said the star s father, Rick Raisman. She s just a really down to earth, humble and caring kid. That s probably what people see in her.
Rick Raisman returned home yesterday, while Aly will stay through the closing ceremony in London and likely go to New York before coming home. He said the gymnast, with two gold medals and a bronze in tow, may be home as soon as Wednesday.
There s a tremendous interest in having some sort of event here to honor Aly, said Needham Selectman Dan Matthews. The selectmen s office has basically been besieged by people offering to do things and making suggestions.
Town manager Kate Fitzpatrick said any celebration will likely include a parade, speeches and a reception.
Gov. Deval Patrick s office said a ceremony will be planned in the near future for both Raisman and Kayla Harrison of Marblehead, the first American to win a gold medal in judo.
Rick Raisman yesterday received an unexpected call from Brown, who told the proud papa that a flag that had flown over the capital was being sent to the family s home.
He just wanted to congratulate us, Raisman said.
Local stores also showed their support. Taylor s Stationery in Needham yesterday began selling Needham (Hearts) Aly T-shirts designed by Needham-based Chillybear s, store owner Jack McQuillan said. He sold 25 shirts, about half his stock.
We had customers in here last week who wanted to know if we could get a T-shirt that said something about Aly, he said. Everybody loved the fact she won the gold, so we thought this was a great way of showing how proud they were of her.