NAZARETH, Pa. -

An Olympic hero has returned home to the Lehigh Valley.

Shot put silver medalist Joe Kovacs attended a Bethlehem Catholic-Nazareth football game Friday night.

He has ties to both schools - he grew up in Nazareth, and graduated from Bethlehem Catholic, so he was at home on both sides of the field.

Kovacs loves being home to watch this game, but it was at a different set of games, where the world loved watching him.

"When you're down there and it's just yourself and the ball, there's so many other people behind you and it just means so much and it makes it a lot easier to throw far," Joe begins.

Joe took silver at the shot put event, and won the heart of his entire community, who cannot get enough of the guy, back here at home, they just call him "Joey."

His family says, he has a humility about him, that anybody who meets him, falls in love with, whether he's flashing his signature smile or talking about those same teachers who are still at his old high school.

"Having the Nazareth community, which I grew up with, watching Bethlehem Catholic, there's no greater feeling than the community I'm surrounded by," Joe says.

He says, when he was competing in Rio, he was focused. Only afterwards, did he realize how many thousands of people had cheered him on. Of course, a few of them, from right there from the stands in Rio.

"Emotional beyond belief!" says his cousin Jamie Kelly. "I don't know if I was prepared for that, and it's a moment that I don't know will ever be topped."

"It's just great to have Joey home and have all the support and love, and I think he feels it!" Mom Joanna Kovacs-Royer says.

And because they're so proud of him, his family just can't help but share their take on what's next for Joey.

So how about an inside scoop that the Lehigh Valley might see Joe Kovacs in the next Olympics?

Jamie and Joanna laugh, "2020 Tokyo! That's the inside scoop, you heard it first!"