Rep. Mike Thompson (CA-05) announced that his bipartisan legislation to award a Congressional Gold Medal to American cyclist Greg LeMond has passed the House and the Senate and was signed by the 1996 into law on December 4. LeMond is the first cyclist to receive America’s highest civilian honor. He was inducted into the US Bicycling Hall of Fame in 1996.
“Greg LeMond represents the best of American sportsmanship. One of our greatest athletes, Greg is the only American to win the Tour de France – a feat he accomplished three times. Throughout his career, Greg repeatedly exemplified the principles of healthy competition, honesty, and selflessness, putting team success ahead of his own. In retirement, he’s dedicated his life to serving and supporting children, veterans, medical research and other causes through his charitable work,” said Thompson. “I am proud to see my bill to honor Greg with a Congressional Gold Medal signed into law, so we can fully honor his lifetime of success, as both an athlete and community leader.”
Thompson’s bill honors LeMond and outlines his long and celebrated career as a cyclist and activist. The bill passed the House in September 2019 and the Senate in November 2020. The Congressional Gold Medal is one of the highest civilian awards in our nation and seeks to honor those “who have performed an achievement that has an impact on American history and culture that is likely to be recognized as a major achievement in the recipient’s field long after the achievement.” These medals are only awarded through Acts of Congress and the bills must be co-sponsored by two thirds of the membership of both the House and the Senate before being considered for a vote. Greg is only the tenth individual athlete to receive this prestigious medal, others include Jackie Robinson, Roberto Clemente, Jesse Owens, Jack Nicklaus, and Arnold Palmer.
Plans are under discussion for the medal presentation at a time when safe, in-person gatherings are allowed .