3 Dec 2013

Owens' gold medal for sale in online auction

7:36 am on 3 December 2013

An Olympic gold medal won by African-American athletics star Jesse Owens at the 1936 Berlin Games has been put up for auction online.

The medal is one of four won by Owens, who undermined a Nazi plan to make the Games a showcase of their Aryan supremacy doctrine.

But Owens faced discrimination and limited job opportunities when he returned home to a segregated United States.

The whereabouts of his other three gold medals are unknown.

Owens won gold in the 100-metre and 200-metre races, the 400-metre relay and the long jump.

But he ended his athletics career as an amateur runner who accepted money to race against cars, horses and dogs.

He died in Phoenix, Arizona, in 1980, aged 66, from lung cancer.

The medal on auction is from the estate of the widow of Bill "Bojangles" Robinson, an African-American dancer and movie star who became friends with Owens after he returned from the 1936 Games.