DeKalb County has produced numerous top track and field athletes over the years and two of them will be competing in the 2012 London Olympics.
Dee Dee Trotter, a 2001 graduate of Cedar Grove, and Angelo Taylor, a Southwest DeKalb graduate, will continue their Olympic legacy this summer.
Taylor placed second in the men’s 400 hurdles with a time of 48.57 seconds July 1 at the Trials to earn a spot on the Olympic team for the fourth time. Taylor, a two-time gold medalist in the 400 hurdles, is trying to become the first man to win three gold medals in the event. He won the event in the 2000 and 2008 Olympics, and participated in the 2004 Olympics.
Taylor’s time in the finals was the fastest he has run the event this season. Taylor’s personal best in the event is 47.25 seconds in the 2008 Olympics. After graduating from Southwest DeKalb, Taylor went on to star at Georgia Tech.
In addition to his two gold medals in the hurdles, Taylor was also a part of the gold medal-winning U.S. 4x400 relay team in the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Taylor also helped the United States win gold medals in the 4x400 relay event in the World Championships in 2007, 2009 and 2011.
Trotter finished second in the women’s 400 meters June 24 at the U.S. Olympic Trials in Beaverton, Ore., with a time of 50.02 seconds to qualify for her third Olympics. She ran in the 400 in the 2004 Olympics. The time in the finals was more than one second faster than her qualifying time a day earlier in the semifinals.
Two other athletes with DeKalb County ties participated in the Olympic Trials but did not make the Olympic team.
Emory University rising senior Miller Douglas was the first Eagle swimmer to participate in the Trials. He placed eighth in his heat in the 200 butterfly.
Also, St. Pius graduate and Stone Mountain resident Shelby Ashe participated in the women’s hammer throw in the Trials. Ashe entered the competition as the top American junior in the event, but did not score after fouling on her first three attempts.