SAN DIEGO — Hidden in the history of San Diego sports is diving legend Greg Louganis. Many consider Louganis to be the greatest diver in the history of the sport. He grew up in El Cajon and attended Valhalla High School before going on to win 5 Olympic medals and 5 World Championships.
Some of those medals are now going to auction to help raise funds for the Damien Center in Indianapolis, a place that serves the needs of those who are HIV positive or suffer from AIDS.
John Howard recently Zoomed with Greg to learn more about the auction and what he misses about diving. Below is a transcript of their conversation:
John: Greg, thanks a lot for joining us. The first question I think a lot of people might have, how difficult is it to make the decision to let go of some of the memorabilia you're letting go of.
Greg: I'm hoping to do some greater good. This is a way that I can share a lot of the experiences I had. The Olympic medals...they'll have a life beyond my four walls. I think that's really exciting for me, to be able to share that with somebody.
John: What do you miss about diving, and now that it's a generation ago, what do you miss about the competition?
Greg: I don't miss competition. I never really felt I was a competitor. You know, I was a performer. I started in performance, I started doing dance and acrobatics. And I was really young performing on stage since you know, since I was three. I always looked at diving as a performance.
John: Because you viewed it as performance, and maybe an outgrowth of what you did in your youth, did that mean there was less pressure to execute?
Greg: Actually I think there was more pressure. I didn't have any control over what anybody else did. So that focus was on my own performance.
John: Bringing it back to the auction, if there's anything else you want to add about the auction, anything else you want to say, to get those bidders out there?
Greg: You know, each medal has a story. And I'm still here, I can share that story. And that's what I'm looking forward to is, whoever picks up those medals...you can ask all the questions you want, and I can tell you all about each one of those medals and what they've meant to me, and also the challenges getting there. Because if it ain't easy.
John: I think that might be putting it mildly. That's great the winning bidder is going to get some time with you. That might be worth more than the medal itself. That's fantastic. Greg, we appreciate your time and, and we hope the auction goes well for you. Thank you.
Greg: Thank you so much. I do too.
To access the auction go to greglouganis.com The online auction closes with a live auction on September 14.
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