GRAND FORKS, N.D. (Valley News Live) It's first-ever homecoming for North Dakota: welcoming home Olympic Gold.
The gold medalist Lamoureux twins returned home to Grand Forks. The Ralph Englestad Arena hosted a community celebration. But, the Olympic heroes aren't done with their mission yet.
"We've been home for like 5 hours and I've cried like two or three times already," Jocelyne Lamoureux said. "Pulled into our house and there's literally a garage-sized photo of me on the garage, saying, congrats from the neighbors and American flags everywhere. It looks like the fourth of July."
The Lamoureuxs' focus isn't just in the arena.
"We think with what we were able to do back in the spring, and the platform that we've created as a National Team inspires the next generation to do more than what we've done here," Monique Lamoureux said.
The Lamoureuxs threatened to boycott the world championship tournament in the spring to leverage for equal resources from USA Hockey.
"We were fighting for equitable support in hockey, but that resonates and transcends sports," Jocelyne said.
They reached an agreement with USA Hoceky for, "groundbreaking support," for then Women's Team. But, after that victory, the Lamoureuxs learned the UND Women's Hockey team would be cut.
"It's not fun to come here and not see pictures of women's hockey players on the wall, and to not have a locker room anymore," Monique said.
"President Kennedy, who was very instrumental in the cuts that have happened, is now looking at leaving the university," Jocelyne said.
UND President Kennedy was just in Florida interviewing for another university president job. When he cut the women's team the Lamoureux sisters wrote him an open letter protesting the decision.
"These young girls deserve to look up to a UND team, just like the boys have in this area, in this region," Jocelyne said.
More work to be done, but tonight a celebration for where that work has gotten them.
"I don't think there's coincidences. I think there's a reason for everything. To have today be the day we come home and to have today be International Women's Day it couldn't be more fitting," Monique said.
The best in the world from Grand Forks.
Governor Burgum had an announcement read that today, March 8th, would be known as the Monique and Jocelyne Lamoureux day. The girls asked if that means kids get out of school next year, no word yet from the governor...