One of the most uplifting singles of the summer of 2012 features the face of one of the most uplifting Olympic stories. Gymnast John Orozco, a Bronx, NY native, is officially going to London to take a run at his first gold medal. He’s also the driving force behind Gym Class Heroes’ hit single, “The Fighter.”

The guys of Gym Class told CBS Local that, in spite of their great collaboration with Orozco and the sense of inspiration his story gives them, that they hadn’t yet met the athlete who plays a central role in the music video for “The Fighter.” They did, however, get a chance to catch up with the Orozco family.

“His parents and his little brother came out to our show, when we played in the Bronx, so we got to meet his family,” singer Travie McCoy said. “If he’s anything like his family he’s a big-hearted, kind person because his family is awesome…Hopefully we’ll be able to bump into him soon. He [was] actually off training for the Olympics when we had this show in the Bronx.”

Orozco had a rough childhood in the Bronx as the youngest of five kids. His father was a sanitation worker and his mom was a homemaker. At age 8 he started taking gymnastics as part of a program offering free lessons for economically disadvantaged youth. Orozco had a talent for it, winning the U.S. Junior National Championships in 2007. He’s worked his way up and after winning the U.S. men’s gymnastic championships in June, he secured his spot on the 2012 Olympic team. He’ll be competing for the gold for the first time this summer.

“We Tweet at him regularly. I can tell that he’s excited too,” drummer Matt McGinley said. “He references ‘The Fighter’ a lot in some of his Tweets and seems really excited about his involvement in our video. It’s very mutual.”

And he does, but perhaps not in the way you’d immediately imagine…

The guys have developed an on-going Twitter relationship, with the band even supporting the Olympic teams’ Raise Our Flag fundraising effort to keep them fed and housed while they’re in London at the 2012 Olympics.

-Courtney E. Smith, CBS Local


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