View Full Version : Darfur "Lost Boy" to Carry US Flag at Olympics

Steve Paskey
08-06-2008, 11:10 PM
I love this ... a very nice gesture. I didn't realize that we had one of the "Lost Boys" on our Olympics team.

BEIJING (AFP) - Lopez Lomong, one of the "Lost Boys" of Sudan who was a victim of violence in Darfur, was named Thursday as the United States flag bearer for the opening ceremony at the Beijing Olympics.

US captains in every Olympic sport met at the Olympic Village and voted to award the honor for Friday's ceremony to Lomong, a sensitive choice given criticism of Chinese foreign policy over the conflict in Darfur.

"This is the most exciting day ever in my life," Lomong said. "It's a great honor for me that my teammates chose to vote for me.

"The opening ceremony is the best day and the best moment of Olympic life. I'm here as an ambassador of my country and I will do everything I can to represent my country well."

Lomong, 23, was kidnapped from his family by the Janjaweed militia and taken hostage. He and other youths escaped and spent three days on the run before crossing the border into Kenya and being taken to a refugee camp.

He spent years there just fighting to survive and famously paid five Kenyan shillings to watch a black and white television telecast of the 2000 Sydney Olympics.

He said seeing US track star Michael Johnson win gold sparked his dream of becoming an Olympian.

Lomong was adopted by a US foster family, changed his citizenship to American and will race in the 1,500 meters at Beijing.

08-06-2008, 11:14 PM
Fantastic Steve, amongst all the gloomy news it does give you hope.

Quot Pat Cassidy, pulled from the "chicken" thread and very apt:
"I'm not being xenophobic here. All of those imigrants that passed by the Statue of Liberty came to the United States to learn English and adopt american culture. Nobody got special holidays.......... "

The New Colossus by Emma Lazuras -1883

Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
"Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she
With silent lips. "Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

Captain Blight
08-07-2008, 08:25 AM
We still have room for those willing to work hard and make something of themselves. Well, congratulations to Mr Lomong! Good for him.