- Simone Biles competed alongside Suni Lee, the 2020 individual all-around gold medalist, in Tokyo.
- Lee’s father, John, was paralyzed in 2019 after a fall and now uses a wheelchair to get around.
- Biles, who met John after returning from the Olympics, helped surprise him with a new wheelchair.
Simone Biles is still pulling off epic feats even though the Tokyo Olympics have come to a close.
The legendary American gymnast and seven-time Olympic medalist helped pull off a life-changing surprise for her teammate’s family. Biles was present when Suni Lee — who stepped up in a massive way to win gold in the individual all-around final at this summer’s games — reunited with her father, John, on the “Today” show after the gymnasts returned home from Tokyo.
Suni and John’s close bond moved Biles so much that she reached out to “Today” to facilitate an act of kindness for the ultra-supportive father.
In 2019, just days before Suni competed in one of the most high-profile events of her young gymnastics career, John fell off a ladder while helping a friend with some yard work. He injured his spinal cord as a result, and the injury left him partially paralyzed.
John uses a wheelchair to get around and often relies on friends and family members to push him. Now, thanks to Biles, he’s regained some independence in that category.
—Sunisa lee (@sunisalee_) August 5, 2021
During a feature on the “Today” Show, John watched a video message from Biles in which the superstar said, “I love your daughter, Suni, so much” and explained that “you have done so much for her, so I reached out to my friends at the ‘Today’ show to see if we could do something special for you.”
“Hope you like it!” she added.
Then, “Today’s” west coast anchor Natalie Morales, who interviewed John at home in Minnesota, led him outside. His family greeted him there and unveiled a brand-new electric wheelchair, which he quickly took for a spin.
“Now they don’t have to keep pushing me around,” John said after the surprise. “… This is amazing. Thank you, guys.”
Check out the full segment from the “Today” show below:
—TODAY (@TODAYshow) September 1, 2021