Footage has resurfaced of an Olympic weightlifter in the men’s 105kg competition at Rio 2016 dancing in front of officials despite failing his attempt, in what is an incredible story.
David Katoatau failed his third and final attempt at lifting 208kg, eliminating him from the competition.
He didn’t dwell on the elimination, though. Katoatau immediately beamed at the camera and raised his arms, before dancing off the stage.
The 37-year-old is from the small island nation of Kiribati, who he has represented at three separate Olympics.
In each of those Games – Beijing 2008, London 2012 and Rio 2016 – he was the national flag bearer at the opening ceremony.
In Rio, he became known for his dance routines after competition – and the reason for doing so is hugely important.
Kiribati is under an existential threat due to rising sea levels, caused by global warming.
Katoatau’s open letter plea
He wrote: “Every day my people fear for their lives as their homes are lost to the rising sea levels.
“We live on an atoll with nothing but flat land and ocean surrounding us. We have nowhere to climb and nowhere to run to.
“As a sporting representative of my country, I am begging you to save us.
“A few days ago CNN delivered the catastrophic news about El Nino; Kiribati will be wiped off the face of the earth in less than 30 years. Scientists and world environmentalists predict that the high temperatures expected in the next twelve months will change weather patterns and tides.”
In conclusion to the letter, he added: “I beg the countries of the world to see what is happening to Kiribati.
“The simple truth is that we do not have the resources to save ourselves.
“We will be the first to go. It will be the extinction of a race.
“Open your eyes and look to the other low lying level islands around the Pacific – they will soon fall with us. In the not too distant future, we will all drown.”
Featured Image Credit: Getty