Olympic gold medalist and Oglala Lakota tribe member Billy Mills will visit the University of Nebraska at Omaha on Friday as part of a month-long celebration of Native American heritage.
Mills gained international fame when he won the gold medal in the 10,000-meter run in the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo. He's the only American to win Olympic gold in the event.
Mills was born in Pine Ridge, S.D. and attended the University of Kansas on an athletic scholarship. He was inducted into the United States National Track and Field Hall of Fame and U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame, as well as being the subject of the film “Running Brave” in 1983.
Mills will meet with Omaha South students and UNO Native American Studies students from 9:45 to 11 a.m. on Friday. He'll then run with the students on the indoor track at the Health, Physical Education, and Recreation building.
Both sets of students are in the process of finalizing a collaborative service-learning project known as “Sacred Circle,” which celebrates Native American culture through weekly educational and service events. Students will take what they learn from Mills and use it to host a booth March 3 at CultureFest, a cultural celebration in Omaha.
For more information, contact Julie Dierberger, UNO Service Learning Academy, at 402-554-3268.