New story in the Star Tribune:
Last summer, Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey got a message from someone he’d met long ago. It was from a man who had once run faster than anyone in the world. His name was Abdi Bile, a world champion runner in the 1500 meters and a native of Somalia. He was coming to Minneapolis, he said, and he asked if they mayor wanted to go for a run.
Frey did. He was beyond excited because, as unlikely as it seems, this would be the second time the two had run together. The first time was nearly 30 years earlier. Then, Bile was in college at George Mason University in Fairfax, Va., and Frey was a 10-year-old who loved everything about running. He lived just down the road from Bile’s university.
One day, Frey took the bus down to the university, and was running on a trail when, off in the distance, he saw this long, lanky figure running toward him.
“As he got closer,” Frey says “I realized it was Abdi Bile. His poster was displayed at the local running store, with his signature and a note to the owner. There were these legendary tales about the workouts he did and the races he won. He was a hero of mine.”