Canadian Olympic Pole Vaulter Comes Out as 'Gay and Proud'

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Photo: Instagram / @vaultbarber

Canadian Olympic pole vaulter Shawn Barber took to Facebook on Monday to come out as "gay and proud!"

"Thank you to my parents for being such a great support. I continue to grow as a person and have a great support group," Barber, 22, wrote. "My parents are my greatest support and have helped me through a lot recently. To my friends, you are always my friends and I love you too!"

The comments in response to his message have been overwhelmingly positive.

"Congratulations! What a wonderful power of example for athletes, young and old, the world over," one fan wrote.

"Proud of you Shawn. The world is getting closer to the day when we accept everyone by how they conduct themselves, not by their sexual orientation or religious beliefs," another said.

According to OutSports, Barber "instantly becomes one of the highest-profile and most successful current openly gay athletes anywhere in the world. He won the world championship in the pole vault in 2015. At the Rio Summer Olympics last year he finished 10th." Barber holds the NCCA indoor record in the pole vault at 19.38 feet. Last year he vaulted 6 meters, becoming the youngest man to do so.

Check out Barber's post below.

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