Did you hear on the news that one of the four gold medals won by Jesse Owens at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin is up for auction? Jesse Owens gave the medal to his friend, Bill "Bojangles" Robinson a few years after the Olympics. Bojangles Robinson's widow is now selling the gold medal.
I also have a video for you which is from the 1936 Olympics...and tell me if you recognize who is pictured beside Jesse Owens for just a few seconds, at the 2:18 mark....
It is Mr. Louis Zamperini! I was so pleased to recognize him! I have written about Mr. Zamperini before, he wrote the book "Devil At My Heels" and I sent a letter to Mr. Zamperini in 2004 and he wrote me back! (He is also the subject of Laura Hillenbrand's best-selling book, "Unbroken".) When I visited Alabama (which is where Jesse Owens was born), I purchased a post-card showing a beautiful statue of Jesse Owens from his hometown of Oakville Alabama, and that is the post-card that I sent to Mr. Zamperini! I thought he would like the gesture since Mr. Zamperini and Jesse Owens were roommates at the Olympics and Mr. Zamperini had written very warmly of his memories of Jesse Owens. ( He called him "a prince of a fellow" and said that he had tried to look out for him, Mr. Zamperini being younger than Jesse Owens.)
Now, if you have watched the video, you will have heard of the German Olympian, Lutz Long who helped Jesse Owens make a change in the way that he set up for his long-jump, and thereby helped Jesse to win his first gold medal. Lutz Long came in second, winning the silver, but he was the first one to congratulate Jesse on his gold medal win.
Here is the quote from Jesse Owens...
"You can melt down all the medals and cups I have and they wouldn't be a plating on the twenty four karat friendship I felt for Lutz Long at that moment".
You may read more about Lutz Long here.
I realize that I have spoken of these men...Jesse Owens, "Bojangles" Robinson, Louis Zamperini and Lutz Long without really saying too much about any of them, but I am hopeful that you already know about them and if not, you will follow the links and learn of them. I promise you it is very much worth your time.