Ellie Simmonds's extraordinary gift for swimming blew the nation away when she won two gold medals at the Paralympics in Beijing, aged just 13.
As she stood on the podium, tears streaming down her face, she not only won a place in British sporting history but a place as the darling of British disability sport.
"All I was thinking was 'Oh my God, why am I crying?' It was so embarrassing. But then again I think it was all the emotions, we trained so hard in the run up to Beijing and there was so much focus. It was my dream, so I guess all my emotions just came out", says the double gold medalist.
It has been a huge rise to prominence for the 15 year-old. Winning the 100 and 400 metre events in her S6 category two years ago, being voted BBC Young Sports Personality, beating the likes of Tom Daley and Laura Robson in the process and then being awarded an MBE, the youngest person to ever do so, all before her 15th birthday, takes some doing.
It's easy to forget that she is still only a teenager. Ellie appears very mature not only in how she tackles competition, but in the way she carries herself and the message she gives out to others less fortunate.
"Hopefully I can show people what you can achieve at whatever age. I have a lot more to come out of me."
Ever since Beijing, disability sport has received a huge boost, with London 2012 promising to offer the most exposure ever to the Paralympic Games. This is something the disabled community and Ellie see as key in raising the profile of disability sports not only in Great Britain, but throughout the world.
"It's what I wanted to happen. Not many people knew too much about the Paralympics until Beijing. They got so much publicity [in 2008] and now with London 2012 coming up, they are starting to get more and more coverage. People with disabilities are now seeing that they can achieve something."
As one of the success stories of 2008, Ellie has now become a great example of disability success in British sport, with her potential being compared to the great Dame Tanni Grey-Thompson.
"I don't see myself as having a disability. We're normal people, we just look different. Knowing that there are so many big names and my name in the same sentence is great for the Games.
"I'd love to be as big as her [Dame Tanni], hopefully even bigger. I want to go to more Paralympics, but you never know, I may not qualify, or get injured. Hopefully I do go to London, and repeat what I did and help raise disability awareness even more."
With Dame Tanni's haul of 11 gold medals firmly in her sights, Ellie Simmonds knows that time is on her side. We could well be looking at the next Queen of disability sport.
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