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Statement on the Death of Jesse Owens

March 31, 1980

The news of the death of Jesse Owens saddens our Nation. Perhaps no athlete better symbolized the human struggle against tyranny, poverty, and racial bigotry.

His personal triumphs as a world-class athlete and recordholder were the prelude to a career devoted to helping others. His work with youth athletics, as an unofficial ambassador overseas and as a spokesman for freedom, are a rich legacy to his fellow Americans.

Rosalynn and I send our deepest condolences to his wife and children and to the countless friends he made in a lifetime of service.

Jimmy Carter, Statement on the Death of Jesse Owens Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/250400

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