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San Diego celebrated the first official Meb Keflezighi Day. NBC 7 reporter Greg Bledsoe spoke to the Olympic runner about where he came from and where he is going.
San Diego held its own ceremony for one of its own world class athletes; a hero's homecoming and sendoff all at the same time.
For Olympic runner Meb Keflezighi the running all began at San Diego High School.
On Wednesday, the people who helped him take those first steps towards greatness filled the school's gym to honor the accomplished marathon runner.
Those first few runs were far from where his story started. Keflezighi's family were refugees from Asmara who made it to the U.S. when he was 12.
Meb would go on to become a citizen, win four NCAA titles, the New York City marathon, and Olympic Silver in 2004.
Now, it's time for one more chance.
"Most people have written me off that it was over, but I'm going back to London one more time to represent our country and who knows what's going to happen," he said.
It's already been a big week for the 37 year old who defended his title, winning the Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon Sunday.
Three days later it was offically Meb Keflezighi day in San Diego.
But he says this is about more than running.
"Because running in terms of high level competition will be over in a year or two, but I hope to be a better person and give back, keep coming to San Diego High," he said.
In fact, he's already started.
"If you want to be a doctor, iIf you want to be a lawyer, it's only within you, but you have to make that decision to say you know what, I'm going to make it happen. And I'm going to do whatever it takes," he said.
And what better way to teach someone something than to lead by example.