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NBC NEWS: For Olympian Lee Kiefer, Fencing is a Family Affair

08/10/2016, 5:45am CDT
By Audrey Cleo / NBC News

Lee Kiefer and her mother, Teresa, after Lee's gold medal win at the 2014 Junior Worlds. Photo Credit: Serge Timacheff / FIE /

Lee Kiefer's earliest fencing memory is, quite literally, a heavy one.

"I remember having to carry my bag, and it was so heavy. I was a seven-year-old, so I was struggling so hard," Kiefer, 22, told NBC News.

Back then, Kiefer's parents would drive her and her two siblings from their home in Lexington, Kentucky, to a fencing club in Louisville, an hour and a half away, several times a week. "I was like, "Aw, man. This sport is gonna be a challenge," she said.

United States' Lee Kiefer, left, reacts after defeating Colombia's Saskia Loretta Van Erven Garcia in the women's foil individual gold medal fencing match at the Pan Am Games, in Toronto on July 22, 2015. Julio Cortez / AP

But it was a challenge that Kiefer has risen to throughout her career. She is currently ranked number one in the U.S. among women foil fencers and number three in the world, and is the first athlete to win seven individual titles at the Pan American Championships. She will compete in her second Olympics in August. In 2012, she placed fifth at her first Olympic Games in London ... more>

Tag(s): News  Lee Kiefer