Ku Yong Jo (July 1955-March 2001) was a renowned boxer of the DPRK.
One day in his school days, he told his teacher that he would give up studying music but learn boxing.
At first, he began to learn playing the guitar in the music group as he had musical aptitude. So, his teacher and parents had hoped that he would become an excellent musician.
His unexpected request surprised not only them but villagers.
The boy came to know over a book that none of Asian boxers had yet won a gold medal in the Olympic Games. So, he made a U-turn in his life.
The more his acquaintances tried to persuade him, the more his decision became hardened.
From the following day, he made his way to the sports group.
He gave himself up to the training and, five years later, won the national championship in the category of his weight. In 1973, he snatched his first gold medal in an international game.
He participated in the 54-kg category event of the 21st Olympic Games held in Montreal of Canada in July 1976.
He overwhelmed his rival in the preliminary with the scores of five to zero, and trounced his rival in the final to win the game.
The media in many countries highlighted that Ku Yong Jo was an exemplary player of modern boxing and that he became the first gold medalist in Asia in the boxing event of the Olympic Games.
With the Olympic Games as an occasion, he made his brilliant figure in the international tournaments.
In his career as a sportsman, he bagged over ten gold medals in international tournaments, including the Seventh (1974) and Eighth (1978) Asian Games.
He was awarded the title of People’s Athlete in 1976.