1. Ariana Washington, a 19-year-old runner from Long Beach, California, really wasn’t expecting to make the Olympic team this year. So, when she was chosen just a few weeks ago, her mother, Euna Washington, was overjoyed.
Euna, who is a single mother, told KTLA she “can’t tell you how many times [she] cried,” when she got the news.
“I was more excited when she texted me to tell me, ‘Thank you for letting me live out my dreams to go to the Olympics,’” Euna said.
2. But Euna was faced with the difficult situation of how to afford last minute plane tickets to Rio for herself and her son, Gabe, who has cerebral palsy.
Clara Randolph, a family friend, started a GoFundMe page to help them get there.
And in just 25 days, they reached and surpassed their goal of $8,000. A total of 185 people contributed to the campaign.
3. “We just didn’t expect her to make it this year, so it’s come as a surprise,” Euna told Press Telegram. “Everyone has been so generous, we’re really overwhelmed by it.”
And the Washingtons aren’t the only Olympic family fundraising to make the big trip to Rio.
There are currently 147 such campaigns on GoFundMe, with $781,160 having been raised at this time.
BuzzFeed News has reached out for comment.