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Olympic Winter Games Salt Lake 2002 Salt Lake 2002 Olympic Torch Relay

"Light The Fire Within"

Daniel Raad and Coach Nick at the Olympic Torch Relay press conference in Orlando, Florida , October 30, 2001. Daniel and Coach Nick at the Olympic Torch Relay press conference in Orlando, Florida , October 30, 2001.

In the Spring of 2002 the U.S. Olympic Committee put out a call to nominate Olympic Torch Bearers. The process included writing a brief essay on how the nominee inspired others. Daniel wrote an essay nominating his science teacher at Admiral Farragut Academy, Commander Michael Nicholson, who students fondly call Coach Nick.

On, July 18, 2001, Daniel's birthday, he received a letter from the U.S. Olympic Committee stating that he had been selected as an Olympic Torch Bearer. The letter explained that based on his essay nominating Coach Nick, Daniel and Coach Nick had been chosen as an "Inspirational Team" and would pass the flame to one another in a segment of the relay to be run in Florida.


Nationwide, panels of judges selected 11,500 torchbearers they thought embodied the Olympic Spirit. Later, Mitt Romney, President of the Salt Lake Organizing Committee added 100 "Champions of Greatness" honoring those who had survived the terrorist attack on September 11, 2001 or had help rescue victims.

The flame was lit on November 19, 2001 in Athens, Greece, then traveled to Atanta, Georgia the site of the 1996 Olympic Games. The flame began its 13,500 mile journey throughout the United States through 46 states, on December 4, 2001.

On December 7, 2001 Daniel was honored to carry the Olympic Torch in Daytona, Florida. Coach Nick passed the flame to Daniel who ran the final segment of the relay in Daytona. He was especially honored to light the caldron which carred the flame to Deland, Florida where the next segment of the relay continued. Daniel was the 158th torch bearer and proudly owns the torch he carried in Daytona.

Daniel lit the caldron which carried the Olympic Flame to the next city on the 13.500 mile torch relay.
Daniel lit the caldron which carried the Olympic Flame to the next city on the 13.500 mile torch relay.

Daniel proudly watches as a Torch Relay Official extinguishes the Olympic Flame in his torch.
Daniel proudly watches as a Torch Relay Official extinguishes the Olympic Flame in his torch.

To learn more about the Olympic Torch Relay and the
rich tradition and history of the torch visit:
The Magic of the Flame

To learn more about the creation and traditions of the
Olympic medals visit:
The Medal Makers

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