Judson's World Leader Forum celebrates Olympian who inspired 'Chariots of Fire'

The man who inspired the film "Chariots of Fire" was celebrated Tuesday during Judson University's World Leaders Forum in Elgin.

James MacMillan, a Scottish composer, and Robert Haldane Smith, a British businessman and parliamentarian, celebrated the legacy of athlete and Christian missionary Eric Liddell, whose feats at the 1924 Paris Olympics inspired the Academy Award-winning movie.

The event was the official North American celebration of the 100th anniversary of Liddell's gold medal performance in the 400-meter dash.

At the event, the World Leaders Forum announced a donation of $20,000 to the Eric Liddell Community, an Edinburgh care charity and community hub.

"Eric Liddell was a great and brave humanitarian, and the Eric Liddell Community is one of the jewels of Scotland," MacMillan said. "Long may his legacy continue into the future."

The World Leaders Forum is hosted annually by Judson University to "inspire the next generation of leaders and give the greater Chicago community access to prominent global leaders," the school said in a news release.

Eric Liddell won gold for Great Britain in the 400-meter race at the 1924 Summer Olympic Games in Paris. Associated Press
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