Congratulations to Cullen Jones, 28-year-old, as he and the rest of his U.S. Swimming teammates head to the to the London Games.
Jones, the New York, Bronx native, is only the second Black/African American swimmer to win a gold medal. He won the 400-meter freestyle relay at the Beijing Games in 2008.
In 2000, Anthony Ervin was the first Black swimmer to make the US Olympic team. At the 2000 Summer Olympics, Ervin participated and won the gold medal in the Men’s 50m Freestyle. In May 2005, he sold his gold medal on Ebay for $17,100, donating the money to UNICEF for the tsunami relief.
Jones began swimming when he was 5-year-old, not long after he nearly drowned at an amusement park in Pennsylvania. The inner tube he was riding on a water-slide flipped over and pinned him underwater. He lost consciousness and coughed up a pint of water as lifeguards revived him. A few days later, his mother enrolled him in a swimming class.