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Oksana Masters talks about ‘leaving a legacy’ after winning third Paralympic gold


Oksana Masters won gold again on Tuesday, securing her ninth Paralympics medal and third gold, this time in the hand-cycle time trial in Tokyo.

Masters has won gold at both the summer and winter Paralympics, having also won gold in cross-country skiing at the 2018 Paralympics in Pyeongchang.

The 32-year-old lives with birth defects believed to be from the aftermath of Chernobyl.

“All the stuff that was ingrained in my younger self, are also the reasons why I’ve been able to, with the support of so many people behind me, get to where I am today,” said Masters, was eventually adopted by her American mom following time spent in Ukrainian orphanages. “I’m hoping that my journey is helping inspire that next young girl.”

Masters also competed in a road race later Tuesday as the Paralympic Games continued, qualifying for the final.

“It’s not about the medals,” she said. “It’s not about anything else except leaving a legacy, being one example for that young girl to see.”

Masters has certainly been leaving a legacy, both in and out of competition. She was recently featured as part of a campaign called “Watch Me” in partnership with Secret Deodorant and the Women’s Sports Foundation. The campaign aims to encourage young girls to stay in sports by providing resources and support.

“There’s so much power when you’re able to have something that you can look at and see and be like, ‘OK, it’s here. It’s doable,'” Masters said. “I’ve always been about seeing is believing, and when you can see something, you can be it and achieve it.”