Born: 9/12/1913 Oakville, Alabama
Died: 3/31/1980 Tucson, Arizona
Jesse Owens, the son of sharecroppers and grandson of slaves, was the first person to win four gold medals in track and field in a modern Olympic Games. In the 1936 Berlin Olympics, Owens won gold in the 100-meter dash, the 200-meter dash, and the long jump. Then, his relay team won the 400-meter relay. Jesse Owens was an Olympic superstar and is considered one of the best athletes of the 20th century.
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- The Jesse Owens Award is USA Track and Field's highest accolade for the year's best track and field athlete. Owens was ranked by ESPN as the sixth greatest North American athlete of the twentieth century and the highest-ranked in his sport