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MOSCOW, March 22, /ITAR-TASS/. A ceremony to honor and award Muscovites who won medals at the XI Paralympic Winter Games in the Russian Black Sea resort of Sochi earlier this month was held in the Moscow City Hall’s historical White Hall on Tverskaya Street in the center of the Russian capital on Friday.
“The important result of your victories is that you show tens of thousands of people, and in Moscow these are hundreds of thousands of people, who found themselves in this or that difficult life situation, by your example that all these difficulties could be overcome,” Moscow Mayor Sergey Sobyanin told Paralympians.
“To overcome oneself is sometimes harder than to beat one’s rivals. You have done it, setting an example to hundreds of thousands of people with health problems, disabilities that there are no restrictions, that there are people with unlimited capabilities. You have proven that,” Sobyanin said.
He praised the Paralympians for their excellent result at the Games, recalling that Team Russia won some 30 percent of the overall number of medals.
“On behalf of Muscovites, I want to thank you for the work that you carried out, for the convincing victory you secured: the victory in sports, victory of character, victory of will to live. I think all you have done is the feat of your life,” the mayor said.
He gave awards to the athletes. Like those Muscovites who won medals at the 2014 Sochi Olympic Winter Games, Paralympians will get 4 million rubles ($110,000) for each gold medal, 2.5 million rubles ($69,000) for silver and 1.7 million rubles ($47,000) for each bronze. Coaches will also be awarded.
The award winners include six-time Paralympic champion Roman Petushkov (biathlon, cross-country skiing), Svetlana Konovalova (biathlon, cross-country skiing, 2 golds, 2 silvers, 1 bronze), sledge hockey players Alexey Amosov, Dmitry Lisov, Nikolay Terentyev, (silver medalists), biathlete Alexey Bychenok (silver), cross-country skiing champion Alexander Pronkov as well as wheelchair curling silver medalist Alexander Shevchenko.
Muscovites won 9 gold, 5 silver and 1 bronze medals at the 2014 Sochi Paralympics. Overall, Team Russia won 80 awards at the Games: 30 golds, 28 silvers and 22 bronzes, topping the medal count.
The 2014 Winter Paralympic Games kicked off in Sochi on March 7 and ended March 16. Over 1,350 Paralympic athletes from 45 countries were competing for 72 sets of medals at Russia’s first ever Winter Paralympic Games.