The 4-foot-8-inch gymnast wore a sheepish expression as she shared an Instagram story detailing what happened.
Simone Biles is one of the greatest American gymnasts of all time and certainly the most decorated, and yet, there are days when she goes under the radar. The Olympic champion was on a flight recently and not only did the airline staff not recognize her, they actually thought she was a child and offered her a coloring book. Biles took to Instagram to share the hilarious mix-up. The 4-foot-8-inch gymnast explained that the flight attendant wanted to give her a coloring book to keep her occupied during the flight, reported PEOPLE. She wore a sheepish look as she wrote, "Not the flight attendant trying to give me me a coloring book when I board.....I said 'no I'm good I'm 25.'"
Biles has four Olympic and 19 World Championship gold medals to her name, and a total of 32 Olympic and World Championship medals. She was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, America's nation's highest civilian honor, earlier this month, becoming the youngest person ever to receive the medal. "Today, she adds to her medal count," said Biden as he introduced Biles. "I don't know how you're going to find room (for another medal) joked Biden. Biles is an advocate for athletes' mental health, foster care children and sexual assault victims. She was one among 17 people to receive the medal alongside fellow sportsperson Megan Rapinoe.
The White House noted that the 17 people honored "have overcome significant obstacles to achieve impressive accomplishments in the arts and sciences, dedicated their lives to advocating for the most vulnerable among us, and acted with bravery to drive change in their communities, and across the world, while blazing trails for generations to come." Her fiance, Jonathan Owens, who was present to watch Biles be honored, paid tribute to her on Instagram. "You're one of the strongest people I know and are so deserving, I'm so blessed to be able to experience this with you. You motivate me more every day to be the best version of myself. Such an inspiration, I love you so much babe," he wrote. The couple got engaged earlier this year after Valentine's Day. "THE EASIEST YES. I can't wait to spend forever & ever with you, you're everything I dreamed of and more! let's get married FIANCÉ 💍🥺🥲🤎 @jowens_3," she wrote, posting a picture of Owens proposing.
The couple plan to get married in 2023 and Biles is caught up in the preparations of it all. "Right now, wedding planning is going pretty good," said Biles. "I feel like I've only become stressed out within the last week, trying to choose a venue and stuff like that, because there are so many great places to get married, and I feel like that's a really big decision." Biles made headlines after withdrawing from four individual finals at the Tokyo Olympics because she was suffering from "the twisties," a condition experienced by gymnasts where they lose control of their bodies mid-air. She faced a mixed reaction, but the majority lauded her for prioritizing her mental and physical well-being.
Biles said she had to listen to her body once she started experiencing "the twisties," which can result in serious injuries. “I had no idea where I was in the air,” said Biles at the time. “I could have hurt myself.” She knew she had to withdraw from the individual events. Biles explained she would have been putting herself at risk if she had ignored the "twisties." "Say up until you’re 30 years old, you have your complete eyesight. One morning, you wake up, you can’t see shit, but people tell you to go on and do your daily job as if you still have your eyesight. You’d be lost, wouldn’t you? That’s the only thing I can relate it to. I have been doing gymnastics for 18 years. I woke up—lost it. How am I supposed to go on with my day?" she said, reported The Cut.