The lost boy of Sudan

Lopepe Lomong was born on the 1st of January 1985 in the small town of Kimotong, in southern Sudan, to Awei Lomong and Rita Namana. Sudan was in the midst of a second civil war. Lopepe was a happy little child living with his parents. On a Sunday morning, the family was attending church when the soldiers of the state backed militia stormed the place. They abducted six year old Lopepe along with other children to be trained as soldier. The children were taken to a military camp and made to stay there for about three weeks during which they were made to survive on water and very little food. Lopepe met three of his friends there in the camp, people whom he called ‘angels’. The older boys had spotted a hole in the fence surrounding the camp and have decided to escape. Lopepe also escaped with them. On a moonless night, they sneaked out and ran for 10 days without knowing the destination but with the only aim of escaping the camp. They ran through the day and slept during the nights. They slept with their head facing the direction they should run inorder to avoid back tracking their way. Unknowingly they strayed into Kenya. They were captured and sent to a refugee camp. Meanwhile, his family thought he had died and burried him in absentia. He also belived that his family was no more.

Lopepe lived in kenya for 10 years. The camp was getting food, as little as it was, through UN program and so the authorities were not bothered about them. When he was 16 years old, Lopepe was adopted by an American Family under a resettlment program. He was resettled with Robert and Barbara Rogers, in New York State. The Rogers have since gone on to sponsor many other Sudanese refugees. He attended high school in the Tully and went on to attend Northern Arizona University. He went on to become a naturalized citizen of the US in July 2007. Lopepe was active in sports. He specialized in the 1500m run but is a serious contender in every mid-distance race from 800m up to and including the 5k.

The incidents above relate to a person called Lopez Lomong. Wondering what is interesting about this person? Lopez was the flag bearer for the American Team at the Beijing Summer Olympics. He was unanimously chosen as the flag bearer by the team captains.
lopez lomong with george bushLomong qualified for the US Olympic Team on July 6, 2008, one year after gaining his US citizenship."Now I'm not just one of the 'Lost Boys,'" he told reporters. "I'm an American."

Though Lopez failed to qualify for the finals in Beijing Olympics, he has not failed to impress and inspire.

5 Comments:

RINZU SUSAN RAJAN said...

WOW.. THAT WAS REALLY GOOD....

suren said...

thanks.. welcome to my blog :)

Gauri Gharpure said...

nice write up Suren. I didn't know about this, but as usual, your posts always talk about something important and worth knowing that's happening around...

pooja said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
rahul said...

dude..there is an award waiting for you at my blog!!!