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Sara Beckord Swails

Former RHS track star, Sara Beckord Swails (class of 1968), who eventually coached women's track at the University of Iowa, is on the left in this photo taken during the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympic torch relay.

Editor's note: In 2002, Sara's daughter created a Geocities Web site about Sara's participation in the Olympic torch relay, and we included a link to it. But that page is no longer available, and in 2010, Sara sent us the information that her daughter had posted on the page.

Wentzville, Missouri
January 9, 2002

"The Salt Lake Organizing committee for the Olympic Winter Games of 2002 seeks individuals who embody the Olympic Spirit by motivating their peers and communities. These men, women and children will showcase the passion and diversity of our country as the Salt Lake 2002 Olympic Torch Relay travels more than 13,500 miles. One by one, selected torchbearers will Light the Fire Within their communities and the nation as they help carry the Olympic Flame."

They were looking for individuals who fit this criteria:
Inspire others to greater achievement
Have been a source of inspiration for his/her community
Embody the inspirational spirit of the Olympic Movement
Motivate others by encountering and overcoming adversity

So let us tell you about our mom (in 100 words or less):

"Our mother has fought for women's athletics despite her lack of opportunities. Growing up in the 1960s, in 1 of 3 states that offered women's sports, she was a High School stand-out. So talented that at 18 she qualified and competed in the 1968 US Olympic Track and Field Trials. Upon graduation she was forced to end her racing days, since there were no women's college athletics. Instead, she became a physical education teacher and coached high school girls sports once Title IX took effect. Today she coaches Division I Track for the University of Iowa. She now provides the college athletic dream for many deserving women. An opportunity she never had, but is proud to share."

Iowa Track Hall of Fame
Rolfe Alumni Web Site

Sara ran a leg of the Torch Relay in Wentzville, Missouri January 9, 2002.

Sara's email address is sarajane2113@mchsi.com if you'd like to congratulate her. We just had to take this opportunity to brag about her.

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