“Put yourself in Meb’s shoes” were the last words said in Skechers’s new commercial for their Go Run Ride 3 sneakers. However, this past week, the entire city of Boston and everyone in the United States were running with Meb Keflezighi as he became the first American citizen to win the Boston Marathon since 1983, according to the Associated Press.
Keflezighi was born in the small African nation of Eritrea but moved to the United States by way of Italy when his family was Eritrean refugees. Keflezighi became a naturalized US citizen the year he graduated from UCLA in 1994.
This achievement is quite significant by itself as no American had won the nation’s arguably most famous marathon in over 30 years. However, the fact that this feat was achieved this year is extra significant and had the whole country feeling an immense amount of American pride. Last year, the Boston Marathon was the sight of a terrorist attack where three people were killed and hundreds were injured. In the following weeks and months, the Boston sports teams and the city of Boston were starting a Boston-strong movement which the whole country stood behind.
The Boston Marathon is a huge sporting event every year. However, watching the highlights of the race, you could just feel the energy and emotion in the air from not only the racers, but from the spectators. There were people crying. There were USA chants.
Keflezighi is the definition of a great American story. He wasn’t born in the United States, but he became an American and the country embraced him as one. This past Monday was the climax of Meb’s great American story. It was a great moment in American sports history which transcended sports and left the whole country bleeding red, white and blue.