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Debre Berhane Selassie

Debre Berhan Selassie an easy stroll 2km northeast of town. Despite its walls hosting the nation’s most vibrant ecclesiastical artwork, it’s the ceiling that captures most visitors’ imaginations. Think of Mona Lisa’s smile and multiply it 104 times!

Debre Berhane Selassie Debre Berhane Selassie

www.afewerktekle.com

A Dedicated Website for The World Most Honorable Maitre Artiste World Laureate IOM.CH Afewerk Tekle will be launched by StudioNet as part of its social responsibility program.

www.afewerktekle.com www.afewerktekle.com

Erta Ale, the living Shield Volcano

Erta Ale is a very remote and rarely visited shield volcano in the Afar region of East Africa.

Erta Ale, the living Shield Volcano Erta Ale, the living Shield Volcano

Mulatu Astatke

The Father of Ethio Jazz: Mulatu Astatke

Mulatu Astatke Mulatu Astatke

Churches in Ethiopia

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Churches in Ethiopia Churches in Ethiopia

Kay Kabaro: Simien jackal

The Ethiopian wolf is the rarest canid in the world (Sillero 2001), and is one of the world's rarest mammals.

Kay Kabaro: Simien jackal Kay Kabaro: Simien jackal

Beautiful Scenery of Ethiopia

Awasa , southern Ethiopia’s largest city, is 100km further south and sits on the shores of attractive Lake Awasa. With plenty of facilities, a great fish market and row boats to boot, Awasa is a great place to stop.  

Beautiful Scenery of Ethiopia Beautiful Scenery of Ethiopia

Gonder: Medieval castles of Ethiopia

The Center of Ethiopian art and culture Gondar, founded by Emperor Fasilidas around 1635, is famous for its many medieval castles and the design and decoration of its churches.

Gonder: Medieval castles of Ethiopia Gonder: Medieval castles of Ethiopia

Abebe Bekila

The first African to win an Olympic gold medal

Abebe Bikila was born on August 7, 1932, the day of the Los Angeles Olympic Marathon, in the village of Jato, located 9 kilometers outside the town of Mendida. In 1960 Bikila was added to the Ethiopian Olympic team only at the last moment.

As the plane to Rome was about to leave, he was added as a replacement for Wami Biratu, who had broken his ankle in a soccer match. Adidas, the shoe sponsor at the 1960 Summer Olympics, had few shoes left when Bikila arrived to be fitted. So in result, he ended up with a pair that didn’t fit comfortably.

 

A couple of hours before the marathon, the decision was made by Abebe to run the way he had trained for the race. So in 1960, Bikila ran the Rome Olympic Marathon barefooted. He and his coach decided that he would make his move 1km from the finish line where the course passed the Obelisk of Axum, a monument plundered from Ethiopia by Italian troops in 1935 (which was recently returned to Ethiopia).

When Ababe Bikila reached the Obelisk, he pulled away from Rhadi ben Abdesselem of Morocco and won by 200m in 2:15:16.2. He finished 26 seconds ahead of Rhadi. After the race, when Bikila was asked why he had run barefoot, he replied, “I wanted the world to know that my country, Ethiopia, has always won with determination and heroism." Ababe Bikila returned to Ethiopia as a hero. Emperor Haile Selassie promoted him to the rank of Corporal and awarded him the Star of Ethiopia. His victory made him a national hero and inspired athletes throughout Africa and around the world. Forty days prior to the 1964 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, during a training run near Addis, Abebe Bikila started to feel discomfort. Unaware of the cause, he attempted to overcome this pain but collapsed. He was taken to the hospital where he was diagnosed with acute appendicitis. Bikila was operated on and shortly thereafter, began jogging in the hospital courtyard at night.

 

This is really is a surprise... the Ethiopian, Ababe Bikila, is racing barefoot.
Olympic Games Commentary , 1960

He was the first athlete in history to win the Olympic marathon twiceLegendary, Abebe Bikila returns home with Africa's first Olympic Gold Medal

Ababe Bikila returned to the 1964 Tokyo Olympic Marathon- This time running in socks & shoes. He entered the stadium alone to the cheers of 70,000 spectators. He finished the marathon in a new record time of 2:12:11:2, 4 minutes and 8 seconds in front of silver medalist Basil Heatley of Great Britain. He was the first athlete in history to win the Olympic marathon twice. After finishing he astonished the crowd: not appearing exhausted. Instead of a victory lap in the Olympic Stadium, he performed jumping jacks and other stretching exercises immediately after his race while other runners crossed the finish line. He later stated that he could have run another 10 km. Bikila returned to Ethiopia to a hero's welcome once again. He was again promoted by the Emperor and received a car, a white Volkswagen Beetle, which was a real status symbol as there were not many cars in Ethiopia at this time. Once again Bikila and Mamo Wolde were entered in the marathon at the 1968 Mexico City Olympics, where Ababe Bikila tried for a third win. This time however, Bikila had to leave the race after approximately 17 km, due to an injury in his right knee. He watched his friend and long time running partner Mamo Wolde win. In 1969, He lost control of his car and it landed in a ditch, trapping him. He was freed out of the car but the accident left him quadriplegic. He was operated on at the Stoke Mandeville hospital in England and his condition improved to paraplegic. Niskanen convinced him to compete in paraplegic archery competitions and Abebe joked that he would win the next Olympic marathon in a wheelchair. Even though his jokes didn't ring true, he still won gold medals in 1970 at 10KM and 25Km cross-country sledge competitions in Norway.

In October 1973 Bikila died in Addis Ababa at age 41 from cerebral hemorrhage, a complication related to the accident four years earlier. He left behind his wife and four children. His funeral in Addis Ababa was attended by 65,000 and emperor Haile Selassie proclaimed a national day of mourning for Ethiopia’s national hero. A stadium in Addis Ababa was named in his honour. In August of 2005, with the assistance of A Glimmer of Hope Foundation and its supporters Isabel and Dave Welland, an Oromo school named Yaya Abebe Bikila Primary Village School was erected in Bikila's honor by the local Mendida community; the school exists a few hundred yards from the remains of the village of Jato, where Bikila was born.

 

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