10 U.S. Veterans Who Won Olympic Gold!

10 U.S. Veterans Who Won Olympic Gold!

August 18, 2016

10 U.S. Veterans Who Won Olympic Gold!

It takes a specific kind of person to persevere and win that Olympic Gold! These veterans have given it their all while competing in the Olympic games and while defending our country on the battlefield.

This year representing team USA at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio there are multiple active service members and veterans.

Before diving into their current accomplishments, lets enjoy a quick flash back of ten amazing U.S. veterans who ended up placing Gold in the Olympics.

1) Charles "Charley" Paddock

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Paddock served in World War I. He was a U.S. marine who served as a lieutenant in field artillery. He was a two-time Olympic gold medalist. He won gold in the 100m and 4x100m relay in 1920. Paddock was easily recognized by his unique style which involved him springing towards the finish line at the end of a race.

2) John "Long John" Woodruff

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Woodruff won a Gold medal in the 800m event during the 1936 Olympics in Berlin. He was a freshman at the University of Pittsburgh when he earned a spot on the U.S. Olympic team. During the race, Woodruff became boxed in by other runners and was forced to stop running! Even with this set back, Woodruff still outran all of those ahead of him and won.

Woodruff served in both WWII and Korea, eventually retiring as a lieutenant colonel.

3) Archie Williams

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Williams also won a gold in the 1936 Berlin Olympics, but this time in the 400m run.

During WWII, Williams was one of the only 14 African-Americans who were commissioned in the aviation meteorological cadet program.  After 22 years of active service, Williams retired as a Lieutenant Colonel.

4) Bill Bradley

Bradley represented the U.S. on the USA basketball team during the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo.  Bradley eventually decided to join the New York Knicks but not before serving six months in the Air Force Reserve.

5) William "Willie" Davenport

In the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City, Davenport won gold in the high hurdling event. Davenport was actually an active US Army private during the Olympic games. He eventually became a colonel in the U.S. National Guard.  

6) David "The Admiral" Robinson

Robinson represented the U.S. on the USA basketball team both in 1992 in Barcelona and 1996 in Atlanta.

Standing at 6'8'', Robinson was 2 inches over the Navy's height limit however he still was able to serve in the Navy before eventually joining the NBA.

7) Vincent Hancock

Hancock represented the U.S. in skeet shooting in 2008 in Beijing and 2012 in London. Hancock has been the only skeet shooter to be an Olympic champion more than once.

He is a Sergeant in the Army and is currently a part of the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit.

8) Glenn Eller

Representing the U.S. in the 2008 Olympic games in Beijing, Eller placed an Olympic record.

Eller is currently a Sergeant First Class in the Army. He is also a part of the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit.

9) Steve Holcomb

For the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, Holcomb brought home the gold after being the driver of the 4-man bobsled team that won. This was the first time that the U.S. brought home gold for this bobsled event since 1948.

Holcomb served in the U.S. Army National Guard for 7 years.

10) Justin Olsen

Olsen is currently serving our country as an Army Sergeant in Texas. Olsen was also a part of the 4-man team that brought home the gold after winning the bobsled event in the Vancouver Olympics in 2010.

 

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