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Since its beginning, the AAU Junior Olympic Games have been conducted in 19 states and 30 cities across the U.S. The Games popularity has exploded to over 16,000 participants in over 20 sports and now represents all 50 states and several U.S. territories. In 2017, thousands of young athletes traveled to be a part of the Games and one of those privileged athletes was one of our very own.

Alejandro “Alex” Brown, an 8th Grader from Kitty Hawk Middle school and Live Oak resident, competed at the 2017 Amateur Athletic Union Junior Olympics held in Detroit, Michigan in August at Rynearson Stadium. He would travel for 20 hours by car with his family to compete and represent Texas at the games. Alex competed in the 14-year-old boy’s division for Discus and Shot Put. During the competition, he would finish 25th in the discus throw (108 ft. 11 inches) and 46th in Shot Put (24ft. 5.5 inches). As Alex prepared for the discus competition, officials were unable to locate Alex’s gear and it led to the challenge of him having to use a different discus for his first throw. His second challenge was during the Shot Put competition where several competitors slipped on the damp surface while throwing including Alex, resulting in many short throws.

Alejandro 'Alex' Brown competing in the shot put

Although Alex did not perform the way he wanted during the games, he had a great experience of a lifetime and made new friends along the way. This year was his first year to compete in any type of track and field event but Alex says that he “loves” the sport and will continue to train. His personal best for 2017 was 114 feet, 10 inches in the discus and 29 feet, 7.5 inches in the shot put. After the competition, Alex and his family were able to take in the sights by visiting the Pro Football Hall of Fame and Niagara Falls before returning home to Live Oak.

At the time this article was written, Alex could be found playing 8th grade football for Kitty Hawk MS as the starting nose guard and offensive guard. We wish him good luck as he embarks into high school in August 2018 and the many endeavors that lies ahead.

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