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  • Trivia Question

    Who made the Olympic 5000 final as a teenager and also got arrested by police and detained for awhile for skinnying up an Olympic flagpole to steal a flag as a "souvenir" ?

  • #2
    Re: Trivia Question

    Wes Santee.
    "Who's Kidding Who?"


    • #3
      Re: Trivia Question

      I have no idea about the trivia question.

      However, I liberated a Union Jack (Brit Flag) from the Vittel, France, city hall at a somewhat drunken post-indoor UK vs France meet reception in the early 1980's. It's huge and I proudly fly it outside my house every July 4th!


      • #4
        Re: Trivia Question

        We'd be more impressed if it were a French flag.... the gendarmes were probably happy to see it taken down. :-)


        • #5
          Re: Trivia Question

          I can't possibly say here what was done to the French flag...

          This was the era of Keith Stock instigating several brawls with the French team!


          • #6
            Re: Trivia Question

            Here's a clue to the question-
            the primary color of the 'nabbed' flag was red, and it was the national flag of the host country.


            • #7
              Re: Trivia Question

              well, I looked up the Moscow games, but see no teenager in the final.


              • #8
                Re: Trivia Question

                You have to go back further than Moscow.
                The year: 1936
                The city: Berlin
                The flag: a Nazi swastika flag
                The kid: Lou Zamperini
                Made the Olympic team in an upset at the trials at Randall's Island, and then surprisingly made the Olympic final as well. Although he felt sluggish in the final behind the Finns, he had enough left to blitz a 56 second last lap, impressing the whole stadium. Later when he was going through a receiving line to be introduced to Hitler himself, Hitler recognized him and exclaimed "Ah! The boy with the fast finish".

                And the flag incident?
                As told by Lou in a Running Times interview:
                "Several days later, Zamperini was walking around town with two other athletes when he saw Hitler and his entourage pull up in a vehicle in front of the Reich chancellery. Hanging from the chancellery was a flag bearing the Nazi swastika, which the brash, impetuous young American decided he wanted as a souvenir. "After they went in, there were just the guards there," Zamperini says, recalling the incident with some amusement. "I timed them marching back and forth and planned it so I could get across the street and grab the flag before they saw me. But I couldn’t quite reach it and had to jump several times before I finally got it and ripped it from the pole. As I started to run, I heard a crack, which I think was a guard firing in the air, and then heard this guard yell "Halten Sie!" I didn’t know any German, but I didn’t need an interpreter for that. They grabbed me, swung me around, and tried to talk to me. I gave my name and really rolled the er’ in Zamperini to make sure they didn’t think I was one of the Jewish athletes on the team. They asked me why I tore down the flag, and I told them I wanted to take it home to America to remind me of the wonderful time I had in their country. There was some discussion among the German soldiers before Hitler finally came out and told them to give me the flag as a souvenir."

                By the way, keep an eye out later this year for a biographical movie titled 'Lou Zamperini' coming out of Universal Studios, produced by and starring Nicholas Cage. The screenplay is said to include the Olympic exploits, the later NCAA career at USC, the wartime plane crash survival and Japanese prison beatings, and post-war struggles to come to terms with it all.

                Zamperini- one of my favorites! I wish I'd been in the stadium in Berlin to see that 5K final! Years later (1979) I visited that stadium, walked up and down the steps, around the Olympic flame bowl and so on, and pictured in my mind Jesse Owens and Zamperini doing their thing down there when the track was still cinders....