By Chris Nicholls
TAIZHOU, CHINA: Yenda Lee has taken part in the Olympic Torch relay in home country China, running in front of an estimated one million people in the city of Taizhou.
Lee, one of 104 torchbearers in the city, located in east Jiangsu province, was joined by her family on the run, with brother Tiber Lee flying with her from Australia and brother Patrick and his wife Lily jetting in from Hong Kong.
“The whole day was very special for me. I was involved in a historic event, all the more meaningful to me as I ran in the country I grew up in. I was very blessed to have my family around me supporting me as I ran and I am extremely proud to have been a part of the Beijing Olympic Games,” said Lee.
The invitation to run in the relay came from sponsors Samsung, as part of a scheme to recognise “inspiring individuals who have made a lasting contribution to the Australian community”, and key Samsung business partners.
Samsung had to appeal for peace during the Canberra leg of the relay, as the Olympic Torch and its bearers faced protests from demonstrators angry over China’s handling of a Tibetan uprising at the time.
Samsung Australian marketing director, Kurt Jovais, called for peace at the time, saying, “The Olympic Games were founded to bring the global community together, and in doing so, to help promote peace. We hope all parties remember and respect that the Olympic Torch Relay is an expression of this vision, which Samsung is proud to support.”
Jovais also ran in the relay in China.