A Legacy Lives On: A Look At The Search For Kenyan Talent At The Aloha Zane Branson Memorial 15K
By Andy Arnold
Andy Arnold ran for LetsRun.com co-founder Robert Johnson at Cornell for three years (he ran under Zeb Lang his final year) and did a fifth year at Ohio State under Brice Allen. A 4:19 performer in HS, Arnold improved to PRs of 3:47, 8:09, 14:09, and 29:35. Johnson, Arnold and a slew of others went to Kenya in 2011 and Arnold caught the Kenyan bug. An anthropology major, Arnold recently received a Young Explorers Grant from National Geographic and thanks to that funding and the support of many others, including LetsRun.com, Andy has spent this spring and summer in Kenya. This is his seventh dispatch; you can read the previous six here.
When asked about his adoption and commitment to educate 69 orphaned children, Kipchoge Keino replied, “This life we have is short, so let us leave a mark for people to remember.” It was a profound statement, and one that was rife with many levels of meaning. Although Kip Keino was responding in regards to his philanthropic work, his words recall visions of his past athletic performances. His win over 1500 meters, besting heavy favorite Jim Ryun at the 1968 Mexico City Olympics, sent ripples through the sport that still reverberate today. Little did Keino know at the time, while crossing the finish line wearing a humble smile and thanking the roaring crowds with a gracious wave, that his three-minute and thirty-six-second effort was the catalyst for a proliferation of dreams, opportunities, and compassion from all corners of the globe.