Jesse Owens’ triumphs remain inspiration to all
Published 12:08 am Wednesday, February 3, 2016
If I average one movie a year, that might be stretching it.
This year, I’m looking forward to the movie “Race.” It’s about one of America’s most favorite heroes — Jesse Owens. When speaking to groups, I often share about Jesse’s athletic accomplishments and how he left a legacy of integrity to America, his family and his race.
In 1936, when Hitler and the Nazi Party were proclaiming the Olympics they were to host would prove Aryan superiority over all other races, Jesse Owens was to prove them wrong.
A year earlier, while a student at Ohio State in 1935, Jesse, a member of the university’s track and field team, set three world records in 45 minutes.
He won the 100-yard dash, broad jump and 220-yard low hurdles.
Imagine being the guy who broke three world records in 45 minutes, the most talented man in what he did and not being able to compete on the world stage in America.
Invited to participate in the 1936 Olympics in Berlin must have been an agonizing time for him.
Should he go and prove a point by showing them up, or should he protest to prove a point and not go.
His decision to go and win four gold medals made him, not only an American hero, but a world hero.
Eighty years ago, Adolph Hitler said the Aryan race was the supreme race and that no black person, or Jew, could do what Jesse shocked the world by doing.
Today in Berlin, Jesse’s face is all over the stadium he participated in.
The street that the stadium is located on is called Jesse Owens Avenue. This should be a message to all.
If you use the gifts God gave you with a passion, one person can make a difference.
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