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updated: 7/26/2012 12:51 PM

Images: Great U.S. moments in Olympic history

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  • America's Jesse Owens, center, salutes during the presentation of his gold medal for the long jump on August 11, 1936, after defeating Nazi Germany's Lutz Long, right, during the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin. Naoto Tajima of Japan, left, placed third. Owens triumphed in the track and field competition by winning four gold medals in the 100-meter and 200-meter dashes, long jump and 400-meter relay. He was the first athlete to win four gold medals at a single Olympic Games.

      America's Jesse Owens, center, salutes during the presentation of his gold medal for the long jump on August 11, 1936, after defeating Nazi Germany's Lutz Long, right, during the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin. Naoto Tajima of Japan, left, placed third. Owens triumphed in the track and field competition by winning four gold medals in the 100-meter and 200-meter dashes, long jump and 400-meter relay. He was the first athlete to win four gold medals at a single Olympic Games.
    Associated Press File

  • Americans Jesse Owens, left, and Frank Wykoff, right, are shown working out in the Olympic village in Berlin, Germany on Aug. 6, 1936.

      Americans Jesse Owens, left, and Frank Wykoff, right, are shown working out in the Olympic village in Berlin, Germany on Aug. 6, 1936.
    Associated Press File

  • United States Olympic boxer Cassius Clay (Mohammed Ali) of Louisville, KY, right, is shown in action during the Olympic bout against Z. Pietrzykowski of Poland in Rome, Italy, September 5, 1960. Clay outpointed the Pole and won the gold medal in the light heavyweight class for the United States.

      United States Olympic boxer Cassius Clay (Mohammed Ali) of Louisville, KY, right, is shown in action during the Olympic bout against Z. Pietrzykowski of Poland in Rome, Italy, September 5, 1960. Clay outpointed the Pole and won the gold medal in the light heavyweight class for the United States.
    Associated Press File

  • The winners of the light heavyweight boxing division pose during the medal ceremony at the Summer Olympic Games in Rome, Italy, Sept. 14, 1960. Gold medal winner is then 18 year-old Cassius Clay, and silver medal winner is Z Pietrzykowski of Poland, right; and the bronze medal winners are Tony Madigan of Australia and Giulio Saraudi of Italy, far left.

      The winners of the light heavyweight boxing division pose during the medal ceremony at the Summer Olympic Games in Rome, Italy, Sept. 14, 1960. Gold medal winner is then 18 year-old Cassius Clay, and silver medal winner is Z Pietrzykowski of Poland, right; and the bronze medal winners are Tony Madigan of Australia and Giulio Saraudi of Italy, far left.
    Associated Press File

  • Dick Fosbury wins gold in the high jump at the 1968 Olympics. His technique, which was coined the "fosbury flop," is now the most common form used in the high jump. Jumpers previously went over the bar face first.

      Dick Fosbury wins gold in the high jump at the 1968 Olympics. His technique, which was coined the "fosbury flop," is now the most common form used in the high jump. Jumpers previously went over the bar face first.
    Associated Press File

  • In this Aug. 31, 1972, file photo, American swimmer Mark Spitz holds five of the seven gold medals he won at the Olympics in Munich, Germany. In winning the 200-meter freestyle, Michael Phelps etched his name alongside the winningest Olympians with the ninth gold of an already brilliant career that shows no signs of slowing down.

      In this Aug. 31, 1972, file photo, American swimmer Mark Spitz holds five of the seven gold medals he won at the Olympics in Munich, Germany. In winning the 200-meter freestyle, Michael Phelps etched his name alongside the winningest Olympians with the ninth gold of an already brilliant career that shows no signs of slowing down.
    Associated Press File

  • FILE -- This July 30, 1976 file photo shows athlete Bruce Jenner reacting after securing gold in the Olympic Decathlon in Montreal, Canada. "Keeping Up With the Kardashians" family patriarch Bruce Jenner, the 1976 decathlon gold medalist, will head to London to be part of the E! team there later this month. E! became one of NBC Universal's stable of networks a year and a half ago. The company is building a studio for E! so celebrities and athletes can stop by for interviews. Its coverage, anchored by Giuliana Rancic, will be featured on E!'s entertainment newscasts, which run weeknights at 7 p.m. and 11:30 p.m. (AP Photo, file)

      FILE -- This July 30, 1976 file photo shows athlete Bruce Jenner reacting after securing gold in the Olympic Decathlon in Montreal, Canada. "Keeping Up With the Kardashians" family patriarch Bruce Jenner, the 1976 decathlon gold medalist, will head to London to be part of the E! team there later this month. E! became one of NBC Universal's stable of networks a year and a half ago. The company is building a studio for E! so celebrities and athletes can stop by for interviews. Its coverage, anchored by Giuliana Rancic, will be featured on E!'s entertainment newscasts, which run weeknights at 7 p.m. and 11:30 p.m. (AP Photo, file)

  • The 1980 U.S. Olympic hockey team members celebrate after their upset victory over the heavily favored Soviet team by 4-3 score in the Winter Olympics in Lake Placid, N.Y., on Feb. 22, 1980. (AP Photo)

      The 1980 U.S. Olympic hockey team members celebrate after their upset victory over the heavily favored Soviet team by 4-3 score in the Winter Olympics in Lake Placid, N.Y., on Feb. 22, 1980. (AP Photo)

  • Mark Spitz won seven gold medals in 1972.

      Mark Spitz won seven gold medals in 1972.
    Associated Press File

  • The "Miracle on Ice" U.S. hockey team pounces on goalie Jim Craig after a 4-3 victory against the Soviets in the 1980 Olympics, as a flag waves from the Lake Placid, N.Y. crowd, February 22, 1980.

      The "Miracle on Ice" U.S. hockey team pounces on goalie Jim Craig after a 4-3 victory against the Soviets in the 1980 Olympics, as a flag waves from the Lake Placid, N.Y. crowd, February 22, 1980.
    Associated Press File

  • Mary Lou Retton, of the U.S.A., performs on the balance beam during the women's gymnastics individual all-around finals at the XXIII Summer Olympic Games in Los Angeles, Calif., on Aug. 3, 1984.

      Mary Lou Retton, of the U.S.A., performs on the balance beam during the women's gymnastics individual all-around finals at the XXIII Summer Olympic Games in Los Angeles, Calif., on Aug. 3, 1984.
    Associated Press File

  • Mary Lou Retton of the USA is hugged by her coach, Bela Karolyi, following her perfect performance in the floor exercise in Olympic individual all-around finals Friday night, Aug. 3, 1984 in Los Angeles. Retton won the gold medal in the event.

      Mary Lou Retton of the USA is hugged by her coach, Bela Karolyi, following her perfect performance in the floor exercise in Olympic individual all-around finals Friday night, Aug. 3, 1984 in Los Angeles. Retton won the gold medal in the event.
    Associated Press File

  • Mary Lou Retton celebrates her balance beam score at the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles on Aug. 3, 1984. Retton, 16, became the first American woman ever to win an individual Olympic gold medal in gymnastics.

      Mary Lou Retton celebrates her balance beam score at the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles on Aug. 3, 1984. Retton, 16, became the first American woman ever to win an individual Olympic gold medal in gymnastics.
    Associated Press File

  • U.S. gymnastics coach Bela Karolyi carries injured Kerri Strug following the awarding ceremony at the women's team gymnastics competition at the Centennial Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta on Tuesday, July 23, 1996. Strug injured her left leg during the vault routine. The U.S. won the gold. At left is Dominique Moceanu.

      U.S. gymnastics coach Bela Karolyi carries injured Kerri Strug following the awarding ceremony at the women's team gymnastics competition at the Centennial Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta on Tuesday, July 23, 1996. Strug injured her left leg during the vault routine. The U.S. won the gold. At left is Dominique Moceanu.
    Associated Press File

  • Kerri Strug, of Houston, Texas, reacts after badly landing on her left leg following her vault routine at the women's team gymnastics competition at the Centennial Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta on Tuesday, July 23, 1996.

      Kerri Strug, of Houston, Texas, reacts after badly landing on her left leg following her vault routine at the women's team gymnastics competition at the Centennial Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta on Tuesday, July 23, 1996.
    Associated Press File

  • Kerri Strug, of Houston, Texas performs her routine on the vault during the women's team gymnastics competition at the Centennial Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta on Tuesday, July 23, 1996. Strug injured her left leg following this routine.

      Kerri Strug, of Houston, Texas performs her routine on the vault during the women's team gymnastics competition at the Centennial Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta on Tuesday, July 23, 1996. Strug injured her left leg following this routine.
    Associated Press File

  • Kerri Strug, of Houston, Texas, grimaces in pain as she is helped after injuring her left leg following her landing in the vault competition at the women's team gymnastics finals at the Centennial Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta on Tuesday, July 23, 1996.

      Kerri Strug, of Houston, Texas, grimaces in pain as she is helped after injuring her left leg following her landing in the vault competition at the women's team gymnastics finals at the Centennial Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta on Tuesday, July 23, 1996.
    Associated Press File

  • Kerri Strug of the United States waves to crowd as she is carried by her coach Bela Karolyi during the awards ceremony in the women's team gymnastics competition at the Centennial Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta on Tuesday, July 23, 1996. Strug injured her left leg during her landing in the vault. Despite the injury the US team won the gold.

      Kerri Strug of the United States waves to crowd as she is carried by her coach Bela Karolyi during the awards ceremony in the women's team gymnastics competition at the Centennial Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta on Tuesday, July 23, 1996. Strug injured her left leg during her landing in the vault. Despite the injury the US team won the gold.
    Associated Press File

  • U.S. gymnastics coach Bela Karolyi carries injured Kerri Strug following the awarding ceremony at the women's team gymnastics competition at the Centennial Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta on Tuesday, July 23, 1996. Strug injured her left leg during the vault routine. The U.S. won the gold. At left is Dominique Moceanu.

      U.S. gymnastics coach Bela Karolyi carries injured Kerri Strug following the awarding ceremony at the women's team gymnastics competition at the Centennial Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta on Tuesday, July 23, 1996. Strug injured her left leg during the vault routine. The U.S. won the gold. At left is Dominique Moceanu.
    Associated Press File

  • Greg Louganis performs in the men's 10-meter platform diving final competition at the XXIV Summer Olympic Games in Seoul, South Korea on Sept. 27, 1988.

      Greg Louganis performs in the men's 10-meter platform diving final competition at the XXIV Summer Olympic Games in Seoul, South Korea on Sept. 27, 1988.
    Associated Press File

  • Greg Louganis hits hit head competition at the XXIV Summer Olympic Games in Seoul, South Korea on Sept. 27, 1988.

      Greg Louganis hits hit head competition at the XXIV Summer Olympic Games in Seoul, South Korea on Sept. 27, 1988.
    Associated Press File

  • Greg Louganis hits hit head competition at the XXIV Summer Olympic Games in Seoul, South Korea on Sept. 27, 1988.

      Greg Louganis hits hit head competition at the XXIV Summer Olympic Games in Seoul, South Korea on Sept. 27, 1988.
    Associated Press File

  • Greg Louganis hits hit head competition at the XXIV Summer Olympic Games in Seoul, South Korea on Sept. 27, 1988.

      Greg Louganis hits hit head competition at the XXIV Summer Olympic Games in Seoul, South Korea on Sept. 27, 1988.
    Associated Press File

  • Greg Louganis, U.S.A., pauses momentarily before his 10th dive of the 11-dive preliminary springboard competition during the XXIV Summer Olympic Games in Seoul, South Korea on Sept. 19, 1988. Earlier, the defending champion struck his head on the springboard while competing in the men's preliminary diving event.

      Greg Louganis, U.S.A., pauses momentarily before his 10th dive of the 11-dive preliminary springboard competition during the XXIV Summer Olympic Games in Seoul, South Korea on Sept. 19, 1988. Earlier, the defending champion struck his head on the springboard while competing in the men's preliminary diving event.
    Associated Press file

  • Greg Louganis, of U.S., nails his 10-meter platform diving final at the XXIV Summer Olympic Games in Seoul after hitting his head earlier.

      Greg Louganis, of U.S., nails his 10-meter platform diving final at the XXIV Summer Olympic Games in Seoul after hitting his head earlier.
    Associated Press File

  • Greg Louganis of Boca Raton, Fla., stands on the podium with his gold medal in platform diving at the Seoul Olympics, on Sept. 27, 1988. With the medal he becomes the first man to win two diving gold medals in consecutive Olympics. At right is platform bronze winner Jesus Mena of Mexico.

      Greg Louganis of Boca Raton, Fla., stands on the podium with his gold medal in platform diving at the Seoul Olympics, on Sept. 27, 1988. With the medal he becomes the first man to win two diving gold medals in consecutive Olympics. At right is platform bronze winner Jesus Mena of Mexico.
    Associated Press File

  • Speed skater Dan Jansen falls, left, during the men's 1,000-meter event at the Winter Olympic Games Feb. 18, 1988, in Calgary. Jansen had learned shortly before taking to the ice that his sister, Jane, had died of leukemia.

      Speed skater Dan Jansen falls, left, during the men's 1,000-meter event at the Winter Olympic Games Feb. 18, 1988, in Calgary. Jansen had learned shortly before taking to the ice that his sister, Jane, had died of leukemia.
    Associated Press File

  • Dan Jansen holds his daughter, Jane, named in his sister's memory, after finally winning gold in 1994.

      Dan Jansen holds his daughter, Jane, named in his sister's memory, after finally winning gold in 1994.
    Associated Press File

  • American swimmer Janet Evans passes the Olympic flame to Muhammad Ali during the 1996 Summer Olympic Games Opening Ceremony in Atlanta Friday, July 19, 1996.

      American swimmer Janet Evans passes the Olympic flame to Muhammad Ali during the 1996 Summer Olympic Games Opening Ceremony in Atlanta Friday, July 19, 1996.
    Associated Press File

  • Boxing legend Muhammad Ali holds the Olympic torch in front of a map showing the torch's route to runner Peggy Fleming, 1968 figure skating gold medalist, during a ceremony at Centennial Olympic Park in Atlanta Tuesday, Dec. 4, 2001. The Olympic torch returned to the United States for the first time since the 1996 Games in Atlanta and was passed from one gold medalist to another before beginning a 46-state tour to the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City.

      Boxing legend Muhammad Ali holds the Olympic torch in front of a map showing the torch's route to runner Peggy Fleming, 1968 figure skating gold medalist, during a ceremony at Centennial Olympic Park in Atlanta Tuesday, Dec. 4, 2001. The Olympic torch returned to the United States for the first time since the 1996 Games in Atlanta and was passed from one gold medalist to another before beginning a 46-state tour to the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City.
    Associated Press File

  • Muhammad Ali watches as the flame climbs up to the Olympic torch during the opening ceremonies of the Summer Olympics Friday, July 19, 1996, in Atlanta.

      Muhammad Ali watches as the flame climbs up to the Olympic torch during the opening ceremonies of the Summer Olympics Friday, July 19, 1996, in Atlanta.
    Associated Press File

  • Rulon Gardner, right, of the United States holds the arm of Alexander Karelin of Russia during the final bout action on his way to winning the gold medal in the 130 kg class of Greco-Roman wrestling event in the Summer Olympic Games in Sydney Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2000.

      Rulon Gardner, right, of the United States holds the arm of Alexander Karelin of Russia during the final bout action on his way to winning the gold medal in the 130 kg class of Greco-Roman wrestling event in the Summer Olympic Games in Sydney Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2000.
    Associated Press File

  • In this Sept. 27, 2000, file phot, USA's Rulon Gardner waves the American flag following his gold medal win against three-time Olympic gold medalist Alexandre Kareline, of Russia, in the Greco-Roman 130 kg final wrestling match at the XXVII Summer Games in Sydney.

      In this Sept. 27, 2000, file phot, USA's Rulon Gardner waves the American flag following his gold medal win against three-time Olympic gold medalist Alexandre Kareline, of Russia, in the Greco-Roman 130 kg final wrestling match at the XXVII Summer Games in Sydney.
    Associated Press File

  • USA's Rulon Gardner smiles from the top of the medal stand after defeating Russia's Alexandre Kareline in the 130 kg Greco-Roman wrestling final at the Sydney Olympic Games, Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2000. Gardner, is the talk of his hometown and state of Afton, Wyo. "It's a great big deal because we're such a small community," said Gloria Putnam, owner of Country Charm Beauty Salon. The unheralded Gardner won against Karelin, unbeaten in 13 years and a three-time defending gold medalist.

      USA's Rulon Gardner smiles from the top of the medal stand after defeating Russia's Alexandre Kareline in the 130 kg Greco-Roman wrestling final at the Sydney Olympic Games, Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2000. Gardner, is the talk of his hometown and state of Afton, Wyo. "It's a great big deal because we're such a small community," said Gloria Putnam, owner of Country Charm Beauty Salon. The unheralded Gardner won against Karelin, unbeaten in 13 years and a three-time defending gold medalist.
    Associated Press File

  • Gold medal winner Paul Hamm, of the United States, center, silver medal winner Kim Dae Eun, left, and bronze medal winner Yang Tae Young, of Korea, celebrate together during the medal ceremony for the men's gymnastics individual all-around final at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Wednesday, Aug. 18, 2004. The International Gymnastics Federation ruled Saturday Aug. 21, 2004 that Yang Tae-young was unfairly docked a tenth of a point in the all-around final, costing him the gold medal that ended up going to Hamm. The South Korean got the bronze instead.

      Gold medal winner Paul Hamm, of the United States, center, silver medal winner Kim Dae Eun, left, and bronze medal winner Yang Tae Young, of Korea, celebrate together during the medal ceremony for the men's gymnastics individual all-around final at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Wednesday, Aug. 18, 2004. The International Gymnastics Federation ruled Saturday Aug. 21, 2004 that Yang Tae-young was unfairly docked a tenth of a point in the all-around final, costing him the gold medal that ended up going to Hamm. The South Korean got the bronze instead.
    Associated Press File

  • USA's Paul Hamm launches off the vault at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens.

      USA's Paul Hamm launches off the vault at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens.
    Associated Press File

  • Paul Hamm, of the United States, competes on the rings during the men's gymnastics individual all-around final at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens in 2004.

      Paul Hamm, of the United States, competes on the rings during the men's gymnastics individual all-around final at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens in 2004.
    Associated Press File

  • Paul Hamm of the United States, center, celebrates after winning the gold medal during the men's gymnastics individual all-around final at the 2004 Summer Olympic Games in Athens, Wednesday, Aug. 18, 2004.

      Paul Hamm of the United States, center, celebrates after winning the gold medal during the men's gymnastics individual all-around final at the 2004 Summer Olympic Games in Athens, Wednesday, Aug. 18, 2004.
    Associated Press File

  • Michael Phelps, of the United States, celebrates after winning gold in the 400 meter individual medley at the Olympic Aquatic Centre during the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Saturday, Aug. 14, 2004. Phelps set a new world record at 4:08.26.

      Michael Phelps, of the United States, celebrates after winning gold in the 400 meter individual medley at the Olympic Aquatic Centre during the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Saturday, Aug. 14, 2004. Phelps set a new world record at 4:08.26.
    Associated Press File

  • Michael Phelps, of the United States, reacts after winning gold in the final of the 400 meter individual medley at the Olympic Aquatic Centre during the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Saturday, Aug. 14, 2004. Phelps set a new world record with a 4:08.26.

      Michael Phelps, of the United States, reacts after winning gold in the final of the 400 meter individual medley at the Olympic Aquatic Centre during the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Saturday, Aug. 14, 2004. Phelps set a new world record with a 4:08.26.
    Associated Press File

  • Michael Phelps wins the 400 m individual medley at the Olympic Games Saturday, Aug. 14, 2004 in Athens, Greece.

      Michael Phelps wins the 400 m individual medley at the Olympic Games Saturday, Aug. 14, 2004 in Athens, Greece.
    Associated Press File

  • Michael Phelps, of the United States, swims during a qualifying heat of the 200-meter freestyle at the Olympic Aquatic Centre during the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Sunday, Aug. 15, 2004.

      Michael Phelps, of the United States, swims during a qualifying heat of the 200-meter freestyle at the Olympic Aquatic Centre during the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Sunday, Aug. 15, 2004.
    Associated Press File

  • Michael Phelps, of the United States, reacts after winning the 4 x 200-meter freestyle relay at the Olympic Aquatic Centre during the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Tuesday, Aug. 17, 2004.

      Michael Phelps, of the United States, reacts after winning the 4 x 200-meter freestyle relay at the Olympic Aquatic Centre during the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Tuesday, Aug. 17, 2004.
    Associated Press File

  • United States' Michael Phelps reacts as he wins gold in the final of the men's 100-meter freestyle during the swimming competitions in the National Aquatics Center at the Beijing 2008 Olympics in Beijing, Saturday, Aug. 16, 2008.

      United States' Michael Phelps reacts as he wins gold in the final of the men's 100-meter freestyle during the swimming competitions in the National Aquatics Center at the Beijing 2008 Olympics in Beijing, Saturday, Aug. 16, 2008.
    Associated Press File

  • Michael Phelps swims in the men's 100-meter butterfly final at the US Olympic swimming trials in Omaha, Neb., Saturday, July 5, 2008.

      Michael Phelps swims in the men's 100-meter butterfly final at the US Olympic swimming trials in Omaha, Neb., Saturday, July 5, 2008.
    Associated Press File

 

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