The 19-year-old U.S. gymnastics star arrived home to a massive celebration. Houston Texans cheerleaders and a marching band welcomed her to Bush Airport, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner proclaimed it “Simone Biles Day” and police escorted her home on streets lined with fans.
“Hi guys, I’m Simone Biles, and I can’t thank everyone [enough] in all of Houston for coming out to see me today and to welcome me from Rio,” she said. “I don’t know what else to say, I’m nervous, and I love you guys.”
Biles grew up in nearby Spring, Texas, where the suburb threw a parade in her honor. She arrived home Wednesday from Rio de Janeiro for the first time since capturing five Olympic medals, following a few days in New York City that included a Jimmy Fallon appearance with her Final Five teammates.
She won’t be home long. Biles leaves in mid-September on a 36-city tour across the country with her fellow USA Gymnastics stars, including fellow Olympic gold medalists Aly Raisman and Gabby Douglas.