48 years ago Ri Ho Jun shed tears on the podium as the “Patriotic Anthem” resounded. He participated in the small-caliber carbine shooting at the XX Olympic Games held in August 1972 in Munich, Germany.
He broke the world and Olympic record with the score of 599 whose maximum possible was 600.
Back then, foreign presses released this news saying: “Out of the reach of imagination”, “It caused an unprecedented sensation”, “Contrary to the odds”, “Extraordinary art of shooting”, “Almost perfect” , etc., and commented that many people would be shocked by the relevant success of the Korean shooter.
Ri Ho Jun was born in December 1946 to a working-class family in the Pukchong district of South Hamgyong province. Since he was little, he was so mischievous that he was called by the nickname of playful in his village. But, the villagers were surprised to learn that he became a marksman who needs serenity and accurate psychological control.
At first, he had difficulties getting used to training and from time to time the idea of selecting another sporting discipline occurred to him. But, he went into the drills with the ambition to outperform other shooters. He always set the high goal of training and strove day and night to achieve it.
On the first page of his notebook is written: “The weight of sweat is the weight of the gold medal.”
During his sports career he obtained 18 medals including 15 gold, and received the title of Sportsman of the People.
At present, Ri Ho Jun, the first Korean Olympic medalist, is enjoying a blissful life together with his children and grandchildren.