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Kipchoge Keino
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Athlete
    (January 17, 1940- )
    Born in Kipsamo, Kenya
    Won Olympic gold medals in 1500 meters (1968) and 3000-meters steeplechase (1972)
    Won Olympic silver medals in 5000 meters (1968) and 1500 meters (1972)
    Held the world record for 3000 meters (1965-72)
    President of the Kenyan Olympic Committee
    Last name pronounced 'kay-no'
    He was a goat herder.
    When he trained, fellow villagers thought he was mad, because he was running without chasing something or being chased.
    He gave one of his daughters the middle name 'Olympia.'
    He was named one of Sports Illustrated's 'Sportsmen of the Year' a decade and a half after he stopped competing.
    His parents died when he was young and he was raised by an aunt.
    The first time he raced at 3000 meters, he knocked six seconds off the world record (August 27, 1965).
    At the 1968 Olympic Games in Mexico City, he competed in six distance races over eight days, despite severe abdominal pain from an infected gall bladder.
    After his bus got caught in traffic, he jogged the last mile to the Olympic Stadium while carrying his equipment, then proceeded to win the 1500 meters by a record margin of 20 meters.
    He inspired fellow East Africans, who would dominate distance running for many years.
    He built an orphanage, a primary school, and a secondary school and helped raise over a hundred orphans.
    He said, 'I think I have been lucky. Now what is important is how I use what I have to help others.'

Credit: C. Fishel


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