Reid Priddy is the oldest American athlete in Rio at age 38.
This marks Priddy’s fourth Olympics, becoming the second U.S. men’s volleyball player to achieve that mark, joining Lloy Ball.
As Priddy himself says, his story began in Richmond, Va., where he was born and spent the first part of his childhood.
From there, he moved around, spending time in San Diego, Orlando and Phoenix before settling on college at Loyola Marymount in Southern California.
Priddy spent his summers during college training in Colorado Springs.
Priddy took part in the 2004, 2008 and 2012 Olympics, winning a gold with Team USA in ’08. He was also an alternate in 2000, but did not make the cut for Sydney.
The 6-foot-5 outside hitter nearly missed the Rio Games, too, when he suffered a torn ACL in his right knee during a World League match in May 2014. Doctors took a ligament from his left knee to fix his torn right knee, so both legs needed time to recover.
Priddy was one of the top players at Bejing in 2008, ranking in the top 10 in scoring (fourth), serving (fifth), digging (ninth), receiving (10th) and spiking (10th).
“I really felt like I caught a vision of what this group could do. Without that, then yeah, maybe this [injury] happened and I’d ride off into the sunset and call it quits. But having that vision really helped me get through that first month and just say, ‘OK, this is worth it for me and I see a place for me.'”
Reid Priddy on coming back after his ACL injury suffered in May 2014
Off the court
Priddy’s injury also allowed him to spend time with his wife Lindsay and two kids (Caden and Eden Scarlett).
Priddy met Lindsay when they were both teenagers, started dating a few years after they met and then broke up for six years before rekindling things in 2006 and getting married in March 2007.
Lindsay played volleyball in high school and is also a former national champion in horse reining.
Priddy told NBC Olympics Rio may not be his last Games, but if he does return, it won’t be on a court.
He will be 42 by the time the 2020 Tokyo Games roll around, but Priddy believes he could still possibly have an impact on a less-demanding surface in beach volleyball.