Athletics: Grand-daughter of Owens excited for Berlin ceremony

INDIANAPOLIS - A grand-daughter of 1936 Berlin Olympics hero Jesse Owens is excited about the chance to be part of ceremonies honoring the US sport icon at this month's World Athletics Championships.
Joining the American squad at the Olympic Stadium where Owens performed before Adolf Hitler and won gold medals in the 100 and 200 meters, the long jump and 4x100 relay will be Marlene Dortch, who proudly awaits the tribute.

Athletics: Grand-daughter of Owens excited for Berlin ceremony
"I'm very excited to see the stadium where my grandfather competed," she said. "Just to be able to be a part of such a great moment is an honor for me and my family. I'm very humbled and excited."
Dortch, 45, had a more intimate view than sport fans of Owens but still saw the fame he received.
"My grandfather was one of those people who would light up a room," Dortch said. At public places, people would come up to him and he was always so warm and sign autographs. He was a very special person and that's what you always felt when you were in his presence."
Owens will be honored by the US squad, which will have the initials "J.O." on their uniforms for the world meet.
"I'm thankful that his legacy and his name lives on," Dortch said. "I hope that just having his initials on their apparel will inspire some of the athletes to remember this time so many years ago and it will inspire them."

Thursday, August 6th 2009

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