Some people will not let anything prevent them from winning an Olympic gold – not even the loss of their hand. This is the predicament that faced Hungarian shooter Karoly Takacs after he severely injured his right hand, which happened to be his shooting hand, in a grenade accident in 1938. Already an accomplished marksman at the time of the accident, Takacs had to start all over again and spent the next year teaching himself to shoot with his left hand. His efforts paid off after he topped a national pistol shooting championship in 1939, and he had high hopes of representing Hungary in the 1940 Olympics after being bypassed in the Berlin games four years earlier.
But World War II wiped out the next two Olympiads, so Takacs had to wait until the 1948 London Games for his shot at a gold medal. But it was worth the wait as he topped the rapid-fire pistol event with 580 points to claim the gold. Four years later in Helsinki, he again won the gold in the same event, becoming the first Olympian to win back-to-back gold medals in the said event.
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