Former National Record holding swimmer and Olympic medalist Sylvia Poll remembered her childhood when she had to leave her native country, Nicaragua, due to the civil war to move to Costa Rica, where she was received with open arms and solidarity.
Because of this, the eldest of the Poll sisters, silver medalist at the 1988 Olympics, in the women’s 200 free and Costa Rica’s first Olympic medal, made a call on her Facebook account to the Costa Ricans to ask for a more solidary, respectful and compassionate country.
Sylvia also swam for Costa Rica at the 1992 Summer Olympics. She also won a total number of 8 medals at the 1987 Pan American Games; and 2 of her times from those Games still stand as Costa Rican Records in 2009 (100 free and 100 back).
As of 2009, she and her younger sister Claudia are Costa Rica’s only Olympic medalists
“What happened yesterday (Saturday) in the Parque de La Merced … NO !!”, she wrote on her social network.
“I was born in Nicaragua, where during my first years I had a beautiful childhood, but because of the war of 1979, I suddenly emigrated with my family to Costa Rica,” she recalled.
Sylvia Poll, 47, was in multiple competitions and events, winning medals and outstanding performances always representing Costa Rica. “Thanks to that love received when we arrived as immigrants, I became a Costa Rican and represented Costa Rica as an athlete with a lot of love and pride,” she added.
Poll accompanied her comment with the video of the song Nicaragua, “Nicaragüita”, interpreted by the Costa Rican music group Editus.
Sylvia Poll was born in Managua, Nicaragua. Her parents were Germans and they settled in Nicaragua where Sylvia and her younger sister Claudia were born. After the 1972 Nicaragua earthquake and rising political tensions, Sylvia’s parents decided to move south to Costa Rica.