Defeat | Failure | Hope | Success | Worldliness

Kathy Ormsby was a success story. She was a dean’s list student at North Carolina State, majoring in pre-med. She was an All-America distance runner. At the Penn Relays in April [1986], she set an American collegiate record for 10,000 meters with a time of 32:36:2. She was on a roll. She had qualified for the NCAA championships at 3,000, 5,000 and 10,000 meters. She was a celebrity. Everything seemed so right for this 21-year-old junior. But something was dangerously wrong. Her will to win was running amok. Last week, in the 10,000 meter run at the NCAA track championships in Indianapolis, she quit at 6,500 meters. She left the stadium, jogged to a bridge two blocks away and jumped. She fell 40 or 50 feet onto a flood plain. Now, she is paralyzed from the chest down. Kathy Ormsby will never run again. How many other athletes obsessed with winning are heading for a fall? Should we…

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