Hagan Landry reacts after winning the silver medal in the men's Shot Put F41 at the Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020 on Aug. 30, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan.
TOKYO – Hagan Landry won a silver medal in the men’s shot put F41 during Monday morning’s track and field session at the Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020.
Landry had one word to describe the feeling of winning a medal at his long-awaited Paralympic debut – euphoric.
“It’s a euphoric feeling,” Landry said. “My feet still aren't on the ground. You don’t come in here expecting a medal. You come here expecting to perform, and I’ve done just that.
Landry lowered his American record on his way to the podium, throwing 13.88 on this third of six attempts. Bobirjon Omonov of Uzbekistan threw a Paralympic record 14.06 to win gold. Niko Kappel, the defending gold medalist, took bronze at 13.30.
The Louisiana native won this medal is for his home state, currently being battered by Hurricane Ida. He said his family was safe, but he hadn’t had the chance to call home yet after the competition.
“I hope my people got to see it,” Landry said. “The majority of them were blowing up my phone this morning saying they’re going to try regardless of the storm, so I hope y’all got to see it. That was for the state of Louisiana. Hopefully, it brings a light in this time of dark.”
After the competition, Landry spent time thanking two key players in his Paralympic career – his grandma and his coach Larry Judge. This medal would not have happened without his grandma, his biggest supporter since day one.
She funded him for his first trips when he got started in Para track and field in 2013. She continued to support his career until he could pay on his way. She also kept him in the sport when he was ready to quit.
“In 2017, I finished second in the world, and I didn’t make the world championships team,” Landry said. “I was just defeated. I couldn’t do it anymore. This was like my fifth team I missed out on. Why would I keep going? And she said, ‘No, you’re not stopping here. You’re going to keep on going.’ I couldn’t come here and not win this medal for her. This is all for her.”