Family of Olympic athlete raises money for trip to Rio

Posted at 9:54 PM, Jul 28, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-29 10:29:23-04

The family of Olympic discus thrower Mason Finley will be able to attend the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro thanks to community support.

Finley’s mother and two sisters will join him in Brazil after raising money for their family trip over the last few weeks. According to a GoFundMe page set up to help pay for the trip, over $6,000 had been raised by Thursday night. The money will go towards flight reservations, a hotel, food, and tickets to cheer on Finley.

“There's no word or one feeling,” said Finley’s 19-year-old sister Matia. “It's a dream just to even be there. It's a once in a lifetime opportunity."

The GoFundMe page proved to be the big fundraiser for the family, however, events held in July helped spread word and raise additional money for the trip. Finley traveled back to his home state of Colorado to take photos with supporters and host a discus demonstration.

On Thursday, a radio station hosted a “cookie toss” to bring out the community and cheer on Finley before he leaves for Rio de Janeiro. This upcoming weekend, the Finley family will also hold a garage sale in Lawrence to further fundraise.

“I can't even believe how much the community has pulled together,” Matia explained. “For us to go (to Brazil), it just baffles me how much love and support we have all around us."

As Finley continues to get ready for the summer games, the eight-time All American at University of Kansas now knows he will not be far from family when he competes.

“It's going to mean so much to me to be on the field, look in the stands, and see them there," Finley said.

The men’s Olympic discus competition begins on August 12. The Finley sisters said they are ready to cheer on their brother.

“That'll be crazy to be there for him. (We might) yell out his name so he can hear me, maybe,” said Matia while laughing.

Mason Finley departs the 2016 Summer Olympics on August 2. His family members will leave for Brazil the following week.



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