Huffpost WorldPost

Ruben Limardo, Venezuela Fencer, Gets Symbolic Sword From Chavez

Posted: Updated:
Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez, right, presents a replica of a sword once used by South American independence hero Simon Bolivar to Venezuela's fencer Ruben Limardo during a ceremony in Caracas, Venezuela, Tuesday, Aug. 7, 2012. (AP Photo/Ariana Cubillos)
Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez, right, presents a replica of a sword once used by South American independence hero Simon Bolivar to Venezuela's fencer Ruben Limardo during a ceremony in Caracas, Venezuela, Tuesday, Aug. 7, 2012. (AP Photo/Ariana Cubillos)

CARACAS, Venezuela -- President Hugo Chavez has given a replica of South American independence hero Simon Bolivar's sword to Venezuelan fencer Ruben Limardo for winning a gold medal at the London Olympics.

The 27-year-old fencer has received a hero's welcome in Venezuela since returning from winning the country's first gold medal in 44 years.

Chavez presented him the sword in a ceremony Tuesday that was attended by boxer Francisco "Morochito" Rodriguez, who won gold for Venezuela in the 1968 games.

Limardo says he'll keep the sword in his house in Bolivar state and let anyone who wants to see it.

Bolivar's sword is a solid-gold saber encrusted with more than 1,000 diamonds, rubies and other precious stones. Chavez has given other gold-plated replicas to Cuba's Fidel Castro and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Around the Web

Venezuela Olympian Ruben Limardo gets hero's welcome - BBC

Rubén Limardo - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Venezuelan Fencer Ruben Limardo Gascon Wins His Country's First ...

Fencer Ruben Limardo returns to hero's welcome in Venezuela ...

London 2012: Venezuelan fencer wins country's first gold medal in ...

Chavez gives symbolic sword to Venezuela fencer