Jesse Owens

by Alex from Overland Park

"One chance is all you need." - Jesse Owens
jesse owens ( (rompedas ))
jesse owens ( (rompedas ))

Jesse Owens was born on September 12, 1913 in Danville, Alabama. He was the son of Henry and Emma Owens and the seventh of six brothers and sisters. He later married Ruth Solomon and together, they had three kids, Gloria, Beverly and Marlene. Throughout Jesse's life he struggled with chronic bronchial congestion, pneumonia and later died of lung cancer on March 31, 1980.

From a young age Jesse was a good runner.  In school he was always running and jumping. In middle school he set records by clearing 6 feet in the high jump, and leaping 22 feet 11 3/4 inches in the broad jump. He broke three world records and tied another in college, running for Ohio State. Later on, Jesse went to the 1936 Olympics and won four gold medals. As Jesse once said, "We all have dreams. In order to make dreams become reality, it takes an awful lot of determination, dedication, self-discipline and effort".

Jesse is a hero because of the time he raced in front of Hitler and proved to him that there wasn't a dominant race. Hitler thought the 1936 Olympics was going to prove how dominant Germany was. Also because, he broke three world records with chronic lung problems.  For the son of a sharecropper and the grandson of a slave to become an Olympian is amazing! He was able to accomplish what no other Olympian has done and proved that anyone can do anything. Towards the end of his life he had one last hurdle to jump and that was lung cancer. He was diagnosed in late 1979 and fought it for three months, but lost the battle. Jesse was an American hero because he had the heart to achieve and never give up. He was, and still is, so inspirational to so many people.

Jesse was a fighter and very determined to win four gold medals. With lung problems and because of his skin color at that time it was harder for Jesse to accomplish as much as he did. "If you don't try to win you might as well hold the Olympics in somebody's back yard. The thrill of competing carries with it the thrill of a gold medal. One wants to win to prove himself the best."   - Jesse Owens

Jesse was strong because he competed on the Olympic finals with a back injury. He is also inspirational; Jesse was an Olympian even though he was black, which shows that no matter who you are you can achieve anything.

Page created on 9/5/2012 12:00:00 AM

Last edited 9/5/2012 12:00:00 AM

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