CAMBRIDGE, MA. - APRIL 20: Participants in the U.S. Women's Olympic Marathon Trials run along the Charles River April 20, 2008 in Cambridge, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

Participants in the U.S. Women’s Olympic Marathon Trials run along the Charles River April 20, 2008 in Cambridge, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

As you prepare for a weekend of Olympic binging, get to know some of the neighborhood’s top athletes that competed in past games, or got pretty darn close.

The American swimmer Ryan Berube won gold in the 4×200 meter freestyle relay at the 1996 games in Atlanta, Ga.

Martina Moravcova, a Slovakian swimmer, participated in the Olympic games in 1992 in Barcelona, Spain; 1996 in Atlanta, Ga.; 2000 in Sydney, Australia; and 2004 in Athens, Greece
. She won two silver medals in 2000 for 100-meter individual medley and 200-meter freestyle.

Daniel Watters was a swimmer at the 1988 games in Seoul, Vince Poscente was a skier in the 1992 Albertville games and Peter Snell, a New Zealand runner, participated in 1960 in Rome and 1964 in Tokyo. He won two gold medals in the 800 meter and one gold in the 1500 meter. You can read all about these athletes in our 2008 story.

Last year we met Dawn Grunnagle — a neighborhood teacher turned professional runner. Earlier this year she participated in the Olympic trials for the women’s marathon team. She didn’t make the final cut, but her story is still inspirational.

Here’s an excerpt from our 2015 article (or read the full story here):

“In June, with Nike as a sponsor, Grunnagle ran the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon in less than an hour and 15 minutes, meeting the qualifying standards for the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team Trials Marathon. In February 2016, she’ll race in Los Angeles, alongside 20-plus other runners, to compete for a spot on the U.S. Olympic Marathon Team in Rio de Janeiro. It’s taken years of dedication, discipline and hard training to get to where she is now, plus the support of her family and community. As a full-time athlete, Grunnagle is proof that it takes a village to make a runner. ‘No one at this level could do this by themselves,’ she says.”


WANT MORE?
Click to sign up for the Advocate's weekly news digest and be the first to know what’s happening in Lakewood/East Dallas.