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Olympian Billy Mills To Share His Life Story at the Eiteljorg, 1 p.m., Sat. Nov. 8

by Martha Hill, PhD | Nov 03, 2014

 
Billy Mills’ (Oglala Lakota) life has been on an incredible journey: one that started on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota in 1938. That journey has taken him from the reservation to the medal platform at the 1964 Tokyo Olympics and beyond.

On Saturday, Nov.  8, 2014, at 1 p.m., the Eiteljorg Museum will proudly present Running Bravely Through Life - a screening of the film, Running Brave and an inspirational session with Billy Mills. The film chronicles Mills’ early life and journey to the Olympic Games. Following the film, Billy and his wife Pat discuss what it takes to discover your passion and fulfill your dreams. Mills will also sign his book, Wokini: A Lakota Journey to Happiness and Self-Understanding, following the program.

Running Bravely Through Life will afford community members the opportunity to hear from a man who had a dream and a goal and focused his young life toward achieving that goal. At the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo, Mills took gold in the 10,000 meter race. Considered one of the greatest upsets in Olympic history, Mills outran several international track greats to become the first and, to date, only American to win gold in the 10,000 meter event, while also setting an Olympic record.

Mills’ early journey is the subject of the 1983 film Running Brave. The audience will be introduced to the young man who was orphaned by the time he was 12 and sent off to boarding school. It wasn’t until high school in Lawrence, Kansas that he discovered he had a passion for running. He earned a full athletic scholarship to the University of Kansas. But Mills’ life was difficult. He even considered suicide and related, “he felt broken by the racism around [him and looked] toward Native American virtues and values to overcome that.”
“Though, his

Running Brave is the story of a journey to the Olympics. However his journey did not end with winning gold. That was just the first step. Today he works closely with American Indian youth across the country through his foundation, Running Strong for American Indian Youth. He is an inspirational speaker with the message of looking inside yourself, discovering your passion, working hard and achieving success and happiness. This is the message and the challenge that he will give to the community in Running Bravely Through Life.

Billy Mills with gold medalRunning Bravely Through Life
Saturday, Nov. 8, 2014
1 p.m. – 3 p.m.

*This event is part of the 2014 Spirit & Place Festival, which runs from Nov. 7-16, 2014.

Thank you to our sponsors: Citizens Energy Group, IUPUI, NCAA and Purdue University
 

 

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