2018 Winter Olympics: Who is Gus Kenworthy?

Published: Friday, February 02, 2018 @ 12:45 PM

NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 23:  Professional Skier Gus Kenworthy poses in the VIP Lounge during the 2017 Global Citizen Festival in Central Park on September 23, 2017 in New York City.  (Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images for Global Citizen)
Noam Galai/Getty Images for Global Citizen
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 23: Professional Skier Gus Kenworthy poses in the VIP Lounge during the 2017 Global Citizen Festival in Central Park on September 23, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images for Global Citizen)(Noam Galai/Getty Images for Global Citizen)

Gus Kenworthy, from Telluride, Colorado, is a 2014 Olympic silver medalist who was part of a U.S. slopestyle sweep.

Kenworthy gained attention after rescuing a mother dog and her four stray puppies in Sochi, Russia. 

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He contended in both halfpipe and slopestyle in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

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In 2015, Kenworthy came out as gay. He received an outpouring of support after simply tweeting, “I am gay.”

Other interesting facts:
  • Born in London to a British mother and American father.
  • Competes in all three free skiing disciplines: halfpipe, big air and slopestyle.
  • Won seven consecutive Association of Freeskiing Professionals titles from 2011 to 2017

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Olympian Gus Kenworthy rescues puppy from Korean dog meat farm

Published: Friday, February 23, 2018 @ 3:50 PM

In this Friday, Feb. 23, 2018, photo, American freestyle skier Gus Kenworthy, left, and his boyfriend Matthew Wilkas hold dogs at a dog meat farm in Siheung, South Korea. Kenworthy saved five stray dogs during the Sochi Olympics four years ago and is adopting one of the many puppies he met Friday after finishing competition the Pyeongchang Games. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)
Ahn Young-joon/AP
In this Friday, Feb. 23, 2018, photo, American freestyle skier Gus Kenworthy, left, and his boyfriend Matthew Wilkas hold dogs at a dog meat farm in Siheung, South Korea. Kenworthy saved five stray dogs during the Sochi Olympics four years ago and is adopting one of the many puppies he met Friday after finishing competition the Pyeongchang Games. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)(Ahn Young-joon/AP)

After rescuing dogs at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, freestyle skier Gus Kenworthy has rescued another puppy.

People reported that Kenworthy announced he and his boyfriend, actor Matthew Wilkas, rescued a puppy named Beemo. The Associated Press reported that the two visited visited a dog farm in Siheung, South Korea, Friday.

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“This morning Matt and I had a heart-wrenching visited to one of the 17,000 dog farms here in South Korea,” Kenworthy said in an Instagram post. “Across the country there are 2.5 million dogs being raised for food in some of the most disturbing conditions imaginable. Yes, there is an argument to be made that eating dogs is a part of Korean culture. And, while don’t personally agree with it, I do agree that it’s not my place to impose western ideals on the people here.”

In this Friday, Feb. 23, 2018, photo, American freestyle skier Gus Kenworthy plays with a dog at a dog meat farm in Siheung, South Korea. Kenworthy saved five stray dogs during the Sochi Olympics four years ago and is adopting one of the many puppies he met Friday after finishing competition the Pyeongchang Games. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)(Ahn Young-joon/AP)

Kenworthy said that the farm he and Wilkas visited was being permanently closed due to the work of the Humane Society International and a farmer’s cooperation. The 87 dogs, some which are expecting litters of puppies, at the farm are being taken to North America, according to The AP.

Related: 2018 Winter Olympics: Who is Gus Kenworthy?

Beemo is among those dogs.

“I adopted the sweet baby in the first pic (we named her Beemo) and she'll be coming to the US to live with me as soon as she's through with her vaccinations in a short couple of weeks,” Kenworthy wrote. “I cannot wait to give her the best life possible!”

This morning Matt and I had a heart-wrenching visited to one of the 17,000 dog farms here in South Korea. Across the country there are 2.5 million dogs being raised for food in some of the most disturbing conditions imaginable. Yes, there is an argument to be made that eating dogs is a part of Korean culture. And, while don't personally agree with it, I do agree that it's not my place to impose western ideals on the people here. The way these animals are being treated, however, is completely inhumane and culture should never be a scapegoat for cruelty. I was told that the dogs on this particular farm were kept in "good conditions" by comparison to other farms. The dogs here are malnourished and physically abused, crammed into tiny wire-floored pens, and exposed to the freezing winter elements and scorching summer conditions. When it comes time to put one down it is done so in front of the other dogs by means of electrocution sometimes taking up to 20 agonizing minutes. Despite the beliefs of the Korean public at large, these dogs are no different from the ones we call pets back home. Some of them were even pets at one time and were stolen or found and sold into the dog meat trade. Luckily, this particular farm (thanks to the hard work of the Humane Society International and the cooperation of a farmer who's seen the error of his ways) is being permanently shut down and all 90 of the dogs here will be brought to the US and Canada where they'll find their fur-ever homes. I adopted the sweet baby in the first pic (we named her Beemo) and she'll be coming to the US to live with me as soon as she's through with her vaccinations in a short couple of weeks. I cannot wait to give her the best life possible! There are still millions of dogs here in need of help though (like the Great Pyrenees in the 2nd pic who was truly the sweetest dog ever). I'm hoping to use this visit as an opportunity to raise awareness to the inhumanity of the dog meat trade here in Korea and the plight of dogs everywhere, including back home in the US where millions of dogs are in need of loving homes! Go to @hsiglobal's page to see how you can help. #dogsarefriendsnotfood #adoptdontshop ❤️🐶

A post shared by gus kenworthy (@guskenworthy) on

At the Sochi games, Kenworthy rescued a mother dog and three puppies. Although one puppy did not survive, the mother, Mamuchka, lives with Kentworthy’s mother in Telluride, Colorado, and Mishka and Jake live with Kentworthy’s ex-boyfriend, Robin Macdonald, in Vancouver.

“I’m hoping to use this visit as an opportunity to raise awareness to the inhumanity of the dog meat trade here in Korea and the plight of dogs everywhere, including back home in the U.S., where millions of dogs are in need of loving homes,” Kenworthy said.

The AP reported that the dogs on the farm will be vaccinated and quarantined on the farm until March.

In this Friday, Feb. 23, 2018, photo, American freestyle skier Gus Kenworthy, left, and his boyfriend Matthew Wilkas watch dogs in cages at a dog meat farm in Siheung, South Korea. Kenworthy saved five stray dogs during the Sochi Olympics four years ago and is considering adopting one of the many puppies he met Friday after finishing competition the Pyeongchang Games. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)(Ahn Young-joon/AP)

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U.S. women's hockey team wins Olympic gold

Published: Thursday, February 22, 2018 @ 2:22 AM

WATCH: U.S. Women’s Hockey Team Wins the Gold

The United States has defeated Canada 3-2 to win the gold medal in women’s hockey at the 2018 Winter Olympics.

>> PHOTOS: 2018 Winter Olympics: U.S. women's hockey team wins gold

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GANGNEUNG, SOUTH KOREA - FEBRUARY 22: The United States celebrates after defeating Canada in a shootout to win the Women's Gold Medal Game on day thirteen of the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympic Games at Gangneung Hockey Centre on February 22, 2018 in Gangneung, South Korea. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)(Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

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How did 'average' skier Elizabeth Swaney make it to the 2018 Winter Olympics?

Published: Wednesday, February 21, 2018 @ 6:27 AM

Who Is Elizabeth Swaney? How Did She Make The Olympics?

One skier who competed in the women's halfpipe at the 2018 Winter Olympics really stood out – but not for her skills.

>> Watch her halfpipe run here

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American Elizabeth Swaney, a member of Hungary's team who finished in last place Monday after a qualifying run that Deadspin described as "thoroughly average," apparently was able to game the Olympics' quota system to get to Pyeongchang. She also met another requirement – cracking the top 30 at a World Cup event – because many of those events featured fewer than 30 competitors.

>> All the curling stones used in every Olympics have come from the same small island

“The field is not that deep in the women’s pipe, and she went to every World Cup, where there were only 24, 25 or 28 women,” International Ski Federation judge Steele Spence told the Denver Post. “She would compete in them consistently over the last couple years, and sometimes girls would crash so she would not end up dead last."

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The 33-year-old from California was able to snag a spot on Hungary's team instead of the more competitive U.S. team because her grandparents are Hungarian, Deadspin reported. She also skied for Venezuela, where her mother is from, in World Cup events.

>> Mikaela Shiffrin of Team USA wins Olympic gold medal in women's giant slalom

In Pyeongchang, Swaney didn't attempt any fancy tricks and finished last – but she didn't fall.

"It is an honor to compete at the Olympics, and I am really excited to compete among other amazing women from across the world," Swaney said, according to Reuters.

She added: "I hope this can be a platform to inspire others."

The Meaning Behind The Olympic Rings

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All the curling stones used in every Olympics have come from the same small island

Published: Tuesday, February 20, 2018 @ 7:48 AM

Tempers Flare During Olympic Curling Match

Few people quite understand what exactly curling is, but every four years, people across the world suddenly find themselves invested in a sport that, at first glance, can be described as people pushing rocks across ice with brooms.

>> On Rare.us: A French ice dancer somehow kept her cool in the Olympics’ latest wardrobe malfunction

For those who are using this year’s go-around to learn what they can about the sport, here’s a fun fact to tell at the next watch party: Olympic curling rocks aren’t just any old bits of earth; they all come from the exact same kind of stone from the exact same place.

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According to the Huffington Post, the curling stones are made from a specific kind of granite that can only be located on a deserted island off the coast of Scotland. 

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The island — Ailsa Craig, also known as “Paddy’s milestone” — is a volcanic plug, meaning it coalesced over an extinct volcano, apparently leaving the granite in the perfect condition to make curling stones. All the stones used during the Olympic Winter Games are produced by the only company with rights to the Ailsa Craig granite: Kays of Scotland, which has been creating the stones since 1851. According to the Huffington Post, thousands of tons of two varieties of stone are removed from the ground once every decade: a blue hone granite, which is impenetrable by ice and water and makes up the insert and running band of the curling stone, and a green granite that composes the body of the stone. There is apparently a third variety, red hone granite, but it isn’t used in curling stones.

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