Not only did she lift 224 kilograms on Monday, Filipina weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz also raised the spirit of millions of Filipinos around the world when she snagged the first-ever Olympic gold medal of the Philippines in Tokyo, Japan.
Pinoy netizens took social media by storm as they closely monitored each Diaz’s attempt in snatch and clean and jerk of women’s 55kg in weightlifting.
But it was during the second attempt in clean and jerk when netizens could feel the possibility of a gold medal for the country. Later on, Diaz tallied an Olympic record of 127kg in the clean and jerk en route to becoming an Olympic champion.
In just a matter of few minutes, Diaz became the top trending topic on Twitter, eclipsing the last State of the Nation Address of President Rodrigo Duterte earlier.
Diaz, who has a rank of sergeant at the Philippine Air Force, was congratulated by commanding general Lt. Gen. Allen Paredes
"The men and women of the PAF join the country in celebrating this historic event," Paredees said in a statement.
"Sgt Diaz truly personifies Diwa, Galing at Malasakit of the Airmen and Airwomen. Congratulations and Mabuhay, Sgt Diaz!"
Politicians joined the rest of the country in congratulating Diaz for her feat, including Senator Sonny Angara, who even posted throwback photos with the athlete, and Rep. Sarah Elago.
“Wow! Tumaas balahibo. First ever gold sa Olympic. Your name will be history. No one can erase the name Hidilyn Diaz. Magbigay pugay,” a netizen said.
Even television personalities called Diaz a hero for her historic Olympic gold medal, such as Kapamilya actress Janine Gutierrez, director Antonette Jadaone and broadcaster Karen Davila.
Some even shed tears for the victory that was 97 years in the making for the Philippines. Other netizens are now calling Diaz the Pinoy’s weightlifting fairy -- off the hit K-drama series “Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok-joo.”
Pinoys turned even more emotional when the country witnessed the Philippine national anthem, “Lupang Hinirang”, played for the first time at the Olympic stage.
“Nakakaiyak! What a proud moment for the Philippines! Thank you @diaz_hidilyn,” actress Anne Curtis tweeted.
And like every proud Filipino, Lea Salonga shared that she stood in her house to sing the national anthem while watching Diaz being catapulted as an Olympic champion.