So… What’s wrong with us?
Glenn V. Cunningham (August 4, 1909 – March 10, 1988) was an American distance runner and athlete considered by many the greatest American miler of all time. He received the James E. Sullivan Award as the top amateur athlete in the United States in 1933.
So… What’s wrong with us?
This story should be printed and left where you will see it often – and then everytime you come across a project you think you cannot successfully complete read this story again.
Eight-year-old Glenn Cunningham raced into a burning schoolhouse to rescue his big brother. When he regained consciousness five hours later, his brother was dead and Glenn’s horribly burned legs lay limp and without feeling. Specialists urged his parents to have Glenn’s legs amputated immediately – he would never walk again – but Glenn pleaded against them. Even though the toes of his left foot were gone and the bone supporting the ball of his left foot practically destroyed,
Glenn was determined to walk again.
That was the summer of 1919. One week later Glenn announced he was ready to stand up. His father lifted him out of bed, stood him upright and let go. Glenn crumpled to the floor. Every day Glenn’s parents carefully rubbed his dead limbs. Every day for weeks, they repeated the lifting-falling exercise. Then one day, for a few seconds, Glenn Cunningham stood on his own. A few days later Glenn took a few small, shaky steps. His parents kept on rubbing his legs. He ate carefully and began to push himself hard, running everywhere he went – to the fields, to the store, to school. In 1930, with no toes on his left foot and almost missing a major bone, Glenn Cunningham set a high school record for the mile run, 4:24.7. He enrolled in Kansas University and two years later qualified for the Olympics with a United States record-setting mile of 4:11.1. Despite tonsillitis at the Los Angeles Olympics in 1932, he still finished fourth. He defeated milers around the world, repeatedly breaking his own records. In his early thirties he retired, holding the world mile record of 4:04.4.
Cunningham won the Sullivan medal in 1933 for his various running achievements in middle distance.
In the 1932 Olympics he took 4th place in the 1500 m, and in the 1936 Berlin Olympics, he took silver in the 1500 meters.
In 1934, he set the world record for the mile run at 4:06.8, which stood for three years.
In 1936, he set the world record in the 800 m run.
In 1938, he set a world record in the indoor mile run of 4:04.4. He retired from competition in 1940. (Roger Bannister was the first to break the four minute mile, in 1954.)
Cunningham’s goal-unachieved was a four minute mile. Many people tried that before and failed. Several theorists proclaimed it was impossible physiologically for humans. Runners tried running steady and fast-paced the whole time. Others tried to go steady for the first half then give it all they had. Cunningham tried many different ways. His greatest success was a strategy, developed from childhood, of running his fastest right from the beginning and then throughout every race.
Author: (From Little Books of Virtue & Wikipedia)
“But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.” ~ Isaiah 40:31( This was Glenn’ favorite quote)