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We Are Stars (Wilma Rudolph) Black History Month Profiles January 30, 2014

Posted by msbobbieg in Uncategorized.
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Dear readers, it is that time of year again and Black History Month is upon us.  Since the Winter Olympics also start this February I wanted to give you all a look back at our African American Female Olympic Stars and I hope their stories provide you with years of inspiration to come. Enjoy !!!

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And here it is just a couple of days early.  I hope you enjoy.

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Wilma Rudolph

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By: Bobbie Jones

 

Wilma 5 She battled measles, mumps, scarlet fever, chicken pox and double pneumonia all before the age of 7, but no one could have ever guessed she would be named the fastest woman in the world – but she was and before it was all over, Olympic Gold would set her apart.  Wilma Rudolph ran faster, jumped higher and outperformed all those around her and made everyone re-think what we call an Olympic champion.

 

If you know the Wilma Rudolph story you know with all her other ailments she battled one major illness that could have sidelined her for the rest of her life but her family would not let that happen.  Polio was one childhood disease many fought hard to eradicate because of its devastating effect it had on the human body and poor little Wilma also suffered from its effects.

Born June 23, 1940 premature and plagued with all sorts of illness, little Wilma’s life was off to a rocky start. Born to hard working parents her father was a railroad porter and handyman and Wilma 2her mother helped the family financially by working outside the home as a domestic.  However, no matter how much work they did they always had time for Wilma.  It was the love, care and devotion that her parents and brothers and sister gave that helped Wilma ditch the corrective shoes and brace and by the time she hit high school she was not only walking but running.

 

Basketball was her sport of choice once her high school days began.  Running, Jumping, and blocking shots was nothingWilma 4 to the up and coming teenager and her skills on the court helped land her high school basketball team a state championship.  And, once at that championship as fate would have it, she was spotted by the legendary coach of the Tennessee State Tiger Bells, Coach Ed Temple.

 

A chance meeting with a famous coach would change the young Ms. Rudolph’s life and you can bet it was for the better.  Wilma was invited to Tennessee State for a Sumer to be coached by Temple and this is where she would learn what it took to compete on an advance level and how to be a champion on the field.  Once it was discovered that speed was her strong suit all she had to do was hone her track and field skills and she was on her way.

WS WR 1She had come a long way but by the age of 16 Wilma had entered her first Olympics in 1956 and won a bronze medal in the 4×4 relay but that was just her first Olympics and just four short WS WR 2years later in 1960 she would walk (or should I say run) away with 3 gold medals in the Olympic Games hosted by the great city of Rome and Ms. Rudolph would become the first American woman to win 3 gold medals in an Olympic Game.  She took home medals in the 200 meter dash, the 100 meter dash and she ran the anchor leg of the 400 meter relay and won and became the fastest woman in the world.

 

Like I said, no one could have ever guessed it but nothing could stop Wilma Rudolph, not being born premature, no childhood illness and not even the dreaded, deadly Polio.  Wilma beat them all and turned hardship into triumph and showed us all what it really means to be a champion and she was – inside and out.

Thank you Ms. Rudolph !!

A Bobbiegirl Ad

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Photos provided by:         Google Images on the Web

Videos provided by:         You Tube

Bobbiegirl Ad                  Produced by Bobbie Jones        

Bobbiegirl Production responsible for content

Copyright © Ms. Bobbie Jones – January 30, 2014

All Rights Reserved

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