Greenhill Senior Has Gold Medal Aspirations in Fencing 

Well-traveled Taylor Chon is one of the country’s top junior sabreurs

Taylor Chon will never be a ninja turtle or a jedi knight, but the swordsmanship of his mythical childhood heroes has become a real-life passion.

The Greenhill senior is one of the top sabre fencers in the world in his age group. And he has Luke Skywalker and four pizza-loving reptiles partially to thank.

“That’s where it kind of started. I saw it and was captivated immediately,” Chon said. “The idea of playing with swords and the gear (fencers) got to wear — I thought that was really cool.”

Chon won a bronze medal at the Junior World Fencing Championships last year, in addition to a gold medal at a World Cup event in France.

His first exposure to the sport came at a summer camp when he was 11. He was slow to pick up the nuances at first and struggled to win bouts.

“I was compelled to just keep coming back,” Chon said. “Over time, I learned how to adjust and be smarter during my bouts. That mentality is what helped me improve as fast as I did.”

Two years later, he earned his first medal for a top-eight finish at the most prestigious competition in the United States, the North American Cup. In 2021, he claimed his first national title.

“That was one of the best moments of my career because I felt that the hard work paid off and knew I could beat people older than me,” he said. “It’s always been about loving fencing, and the medals just happen to follow.”

For the past six years, Chon has competed for Globus Fencing Academy in Farmers Branch under the tutelage of Hyo-Kun Lee, a former coach for the South Korean national team who has trained multiple Olympic medalists.

Globus was a sabre club when Chon started, so he stuck with that discipline over the other two in the sport — foil and epee. After all, sabre looks the most like sword fighting, and is only weapon out of the three where you score for striking your opponent with the blade rather than the tip.

Chon hopes to fence in college with an eye on someday becoming an Olympian, perhaps alongside some of the world’s top athletes who will compete at the Summer Games in Paris.

“I get excited watching the highest levels of fencing, and how the different athletes perform under that pressure,” he said. “Bringing home a medal would be an honor.”

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