This teenager is the first to represent Puerto Rico in the Winter Olympics in two decades

Feb. 16, 2018

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Charles Flaherty, a 17-year-old alpine skier, has broken Puerto Rico's long Winter Olympic dry spell. He held the country's flag during 2018's Opening Ceremony.

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The island nation hasn't participated in the Winter Olympics since 1998.

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While Flaherty is from Ohio, he and his family have lived on the island since 2010, fulfilling one of the criteria for representing the nation.

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Puerto Rico has had some tough times with the Winter Games. In 2002, it deemed a bobsled athlete ineligible to represent the territory.

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Since then, Puerto Rico's Olympic committee has been stringent about allowing athletes to represent them — though many have tried.

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Flaherty has been skiing professionally for four years; at the Winter Games, he will compete in the giant slalom event.

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