Rod Dixon knew all about Louis, because Louis had run against New Zealand legend Jack Lovelock
Pete finds Louis to be an inspiration
On the day that our Roadrunners and SRLA pace leaders spent time with Coach Pete Carroll at USC, we got a special visit from none other than Louis Zamperini. You may not have heard of this legend, but he has an amazing story and shared a few of his experiences with us.
Louis was born in New York City to Italian immigrants, but moved to Torrance as a child. He became a track star in high school and attended USC on a scholarship. After qualifying for the 1936 Olympics in Berlin and finishing 8th in the 5000 meters, Adolf Hitler requested a meeting with the “guy with the fast finish.” Once back home, Louis enlisted in the Navy, but his B-24 went down due to mechanical difficulties and he spent 47 days in a lifeboat before being rescued by the Japanese. He was held in a Japanese camp until the end of the war.
His inspiring story only gets better, and you can read more about Louis Zamperini here. None of us will forget spending time with him at USC that day.