"The minute I stepped foot in the gym I just loved it. I knew it was what I wanted to do for a long time," 19-year-old John Orozco said to CNN in an interview. Inspired by the Hamm brothers' run at the gold medal in 2004, the young Bronx, N.Y. native started down the path to the Olympics when he was 7. His father, who was a sanitation worker, saw a flier offering free gymnastics classes and signed him up, and after winning his first medal at 9, Orozco never looked back. Instead, choosing to look forward, the Puerto Rican phenom has made it all the way to the London Olympics. His heart is set on winning a gold medal again — this time for his country.
Arguably, Orozco may be the best hope for a U.S. gold medal in men's gymnastics in 2012, yet the thrill is palpable amongst the family and community that has bred such a talent. Damaris Orozco, John's mother, said to CNN that she and her husband, William, are thrilled but not surprised their son made the Olympic team. "When that little boy told us when he was 10-years-old, 'I want to go to 2012,' we believed him." You can watch John's journey as the Olympics begin on July 28, 2012.