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Nadia Comaneci

Nadia Elena Comăneci (born November 12, 1961 in Oneşti) is a Romanian gymnast, a winner of five Olympic titles. Voted as one of the greatest athletes in the 20th Century world wide and in the Olympics history. Also regarded as the greatest gymnast of all time.

As a 13-year-old, Comăneci's first major success was at the 1975 European Championships, winning 4 titles. She was coached by the successful but strict Bela Karolyi, who would later defect to the United States and become coach of the American team.

The following year, still only aged 14, she became the star of the 1976 Summer Olympics. Not only did she become the first gymnast at the Olympics to receive the perfect score of ten (which she repeated 6 more times), she also won three gold medals (individual all-around, balance beam and uneven bars), a silver medal (team all-around) and a bronze (floor exercise).

After winning the world team championships with Romania, beating the Soviet Union for the first time, Nadia Comăneci briefly spent time in the hospital for blood poisoning. When she returned at the 1980 Summer Olympics, now 18 years of age, she had grown up. She lost her all-around title to Yelena Davydova after having to wait for a very long time to receive her last mark - which turned out to be 0.075 to low to tie for first place. However, she retained her Olympic title in the balance beam and tied for the gold medal in the floor exercise, while also finishing second with the Romanian team.

Nadia Comăneci retired after these Games, and had troublesome years ahead of her. Being force by the son of Romanian president Nicolae Ceauşescu to have an affair led to defection to US in the late 1989, not long before the fall of communism. In 1996, she settled down her marriage with 1984 Olympic Champion Bart Conner, with whom she now lives in the United States.

In 1999, Nadia became the first athlete to be invited to speak at the United Nations to launch the Year 2000 International Year Of Volunteers. Nadia is currently busy with gymnastics and charity around the world. She and her husband owned the 1,000 students Bart Conner Gymnastics Academy, the International Gymnast Magazine, The Perfect 10 Production Company and 4 Sports Equipement shops.

Nadia is now the Vice-Chair of the Board Of Director of International Special Olympics, the Honorary President of Romanian Gymnastics Federation, The Honorary President of Romanian Olympics Committee, The Ambassador Of Sports Of Romania, the Vice President of the Board of Director of Mucular Dystrophy Association, Member of International Gymnastics Federation Foundation,etc..

December 23rd 2003, Nadia just release her first own written book title "Letters To A Young Gymnast". Nadia is now starting a Nadia Comaneci Children's Clinic in Bucharest, a charity clinic to help Orphanage and children in Romania.