Sometimes you can respect the work someone does, but also become inspired by them because of things they go through. This is the case with Wilma Rudolph. Wilma Rudolph was an Olympic athlete and an inspiration.
Wilma Glodean Rudolph was born in 1940 in Tennessee. Her parents had twenty-two children. She was the 20th child born, but was premature. When she was four she contracted infantile paralysis. Her foot had become twisted and she had to wear a brace on her left leg and foot until she was nine. She wore an orthopedic shoe for a couple years after she was able to lose the brace. She became an amazing runner despite also surviving polio and scarlet fever.
She began playing basketball in school, but was noticed by Ed Temple, a Tennessee State track and field coach. She also had experience on the high school’s track team. She went on to a summer program at Tennessee State. She earned a spot on the Olympic track and field team. She earned a bronze medal at the 1956 Melbourne Games. She won three gold medals at the 1960 Rome Summer Olympics. As an African American woman her homecoming parade and banquet were the first fully integrated municipal events in her city.
She became a teacher at her childhood school and later moved and began to head a community center. She moved a few more times living in several states. She won several awards and had a private meeting with President Kennedy in the Oval Office. She has been honored in the National Black Sports and Entertainment Hall of Fame, the National Track and Field Hall of Fame, the U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame, and the National Women’s Hall of Fame.
She married twice. Her second husband and Wilma had four children. She, also, worked in television multiple times. She raised her children in Indianapolis and hosted a local TV show. She was later diagnosed with a brain tumor. She, also, had throat cancer. She died in 1994. She was honored and has left a legacy. She continues to be given tributes, including by Sports Illustrated, with a United States Postal Service stamp, and dramas on television and film.
From childhood to adulthood she has overcome trails and worked in admirable positions. From athletics to teaching, motherhood, and more Wilma Rudolph is an inspiration. Be inspired! Have a bright day!