In full view of the Fuhrer, a nineteen year old German athlete gave Jesse Owens some advice – ‘play it safe, make your mark several inches before the takeoff board and jump from there.’ Owens, the grandson of a slave and the son of a sharecropper took the advice, qualified for the finals and took his tally of gold medals to four. The first to congratulate him was Luz Long. “It took a lot of courage for him to befriend me in front of Hitler… You can melt down all the medals and cups I have and they wouldn’t be a plating on the twenty-four carat friendship that I felt for Luz Long at that moment,” he said, recounting his rendezvous with the blue eyed German but for all his heroics, Jesse had to take the freight elevator in the Waldorf Astoria to attend his own reception.

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In full view of the Fuhrer, a nineteen year old German athlete gave Jesse Owens some advice – ‘play it safe, make your mark several inches before the takeoff board and jump from there.’ Owens, the grandson of a slave and the son of a sharecropper took the advice, qualified for the finals and took his tally of gold medals to four. The first to congratulate him was Luz Long. “It took a lot of courage for him to befriend me in front of Hitler… You can melt down all the medals and cups I have and they wouldn’t be a plating on the twenty-four carat friendship that I felt for Luz Long at that moment,” he said, recounting his rendezvous with the blue eyed German but for all his heroics, Jesse had to take the freight elevator in the Waldorf Astoria to attend his own reception.

via (x)

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