The London 2012 edition of the Summer Olympics created some of the most amazing and spectacular memories that proved why we eagerly look forward to it every four years. Here are 17 of the most significant moments from the past 17 days.

1. Female Muslim athletes receiving standing ovations just for competing, because the world realizes the victory they’d achieved by competing.

2. A grueling women’s triathlon decided by a photo finish as winner Switzerland’s Nicola Spirig crosses the line at the exact same time as Sweden’s Lisa Norden.

3. Great Britain’s Andy Murray thrashing tennis icon Switzerland’s Roger Federer to win the gold medal in his home country, and he openly celebrates with the jubilant crowd.

4. Michael Phelps wins his 19th gold medal, which is more than any combined medals by any other Olympian in history.

5. Kenyan’s David Rudisha smashes the old world record with a 1:40.91 time and dominates his competition in his gold medal performance in the 800 meter track race.

6. The Canadian women’s soccer team grabs the attention of their entire nation after the controversial loss in the semifinals, and then recovers to win Canada’s first ever Olympic soccer medal while capturing the hearts of their home country.

7. Kayla Harrison, who was once suicidal and ready to quit judo after years of abuse from a former coach, won America’s first ever judo gold medal.

8. Ugandan Stephen Kiprotich upsets the powerhouse Kenyan runners for the gold medal in the men’s marathon and wins Uganda’s second ever gold medal and first since 1972.

9. American Manteo Mitchell ran the second half of his lap in the men’s 4×400 relay with a broken leg. I don’t do anything for a day if I have a hangnail.

10. Usain Bolt sprints into legendary status by being the first Olympian to win back to back the 100 meter and 200 meter gold medals, and a Jamaican commentator asks, “Is there a throne in England big enough for Usain Bolt?”

11. Massive underdogs, the South African lightweight men’s four rowing team came from behind to surpass heavily favored Great Britain and Denmark to win the country’s first ever rowing gold medal.

12. Great Britain’s Jessica Ennis instantly becomes a sports icon for the nation by dominating the heptathlon and winning Britain’s first track gold of the Games.

13. A humble and sweet Missy Franklin quietly goes about proving her own dominance in women’s Olympic swimming by winning four gold medals and breaking two world records.

14. Women’s boxing debuted in the Olympics and for the first time every sport has a women’s event.

15. 15-year-old Ruta Meilutyte shocks the far more experienced field that included heavy favorite America’s Rebecca Soni to win gold in the women’s 100m breaststroke and give Lithuania its first Olympic swimming medal.

16. After Grenada’s Kirani James wins his semifinal heat, he asks fellow runner South African Oscar Pistorius to exchange his number with him as a sign of respect and admiration for the double amputee Pistorius. James goes on to win Grenada’s first ever (gold) medal.

17. Niger’s Hamadou Dijbo Issaka becomes a cult hero in front of 20,000 roaring fans when he completes the 2,000 meter course in men’s single sculls. He may have trailed the nearest competitor by 300 meters, but he gains everyone’s respect for sticking with the race after only three months of practice on a fishing boat.

What are your favorite Olympic memories?

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Chris Spicer
Contributing Writer

(Image courtesy of NBC)

Chris Spicer

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV