Ireland’s Olympic haul

Alright, we knew that the United States would have a big haul of Olympic medals in London. And congratulations to all of those athletes who won gold, silver and bronze.

But we were happy to see Ireland have its best Games since 1956, according to Reuters, taking home five medals, four in boxing and one in show jumping.

The big story was the gold won by women’s lightweight boxer Katie Taylor of Bray. Today she got a hero’s welcome home, with some 20,000 turning out in the County Wicklow town, The Irish Times reported.

Taylor has a humble and devout personality. “I had a whole nation of people praying for me,” she said. “I just felt the presence of God in that stadium.”

The story continues: Not one for over-elaboration, she departed the stage a few minutes later. Taylor said she wanted some sleep and to visit her 80-year-old grandmother Kathleen Cranley, who she has not seen for weeks.”

Reuters noted, “The strong Olympic showing comes after a disappointing European Championship soccer tournament, in which the Irish team lost all three matches, and at a time when the country is struggling to recover from economic recession.”