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08/13/2018

Author Publishes Book on Trailblazer and Olympian Lucile “Ludy” Godbold ’22

Quick Facts

 Patrick’s book, “Long-Armed Ludy and the First Women’s Olympics” (Charlesbridge, 2017), tells the story of Godbold, a Winthrop University physical education graduate who made history when she won a total of six medals at the Women’s Olympics in Paris.
 Patrick spent a lot of time touring campus, exploring the Louise Pettus Archives and Special Collections and asking archives’ staff all kinds of questions.

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ROCK HILL, SOUTH CAROLINA — When author Jean L.S. Patrick researched the 1922 Women’s Olympics and found a photo of Lucile “Ludy” Godbold ’22, she knew two things: first, she had to know about her; and two, she needed to tell her story.

“I love to discover little-known stories about amazing people,” she said. “When they involve sports, all the better! I also love introducing kids—and adults, too--to people such as Ludy, who persevere despite all odds. I also think it's important for kids, and all of us, to know stories about people helping people.”

Patrick’s book, “Long-Armed Ludy and the First Women’s Olympics” (Charlesbridge, 2017), tells the story of Godbold, a Winthrop University physical education graduate who made history when she won a total of six medals at the Women’s Olympics in Paris. Godbold didn’t have the money to travel to the Olympics, but her fellow students and teachers pulled funds together to send her.

The book touches on this generous act and features Godbold’s strong connection to Winthrop. It also includes illustrations of several familiar places on campus, such as Tillman Auditorium and founding President D.B. Johnson’s desk.

Patrick spent a lot of time touring campus, exploring the Louise Pettus Archives and Special Collections and asking archives’ staff all kinds of questions. She stayed at the Winthrop Inn, toured the athletic fields and spent time in Tillman Auditorium, where Godbold gave her thank-you speech. She called the latter visit one of the highlights of her trip.

“At this point, I truly realized that Ludy's story wasn't just a sports story, but the story of people helping people,” she said. “As I type, I realize that my research experience paralleled Ludy's. Just as Ludy could not have competed at the Women's Olympics without the help of others, I could not have written this book without the help of others.”

Since its publication, “Long-Armed Ludy” was chosen as a Junior Library Guild selection. Patrick attended the National Book Festival in Washington, D.C., and is frequently invited to schools to talk about Ludy’s story. The book is available for purchase on Amazon. Copies to check out are also available at Dacus Library.

For more information, contact Nicole Chisari, communications coordinator, at 803/323-2236 or chisarin@winthrop.edu.

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