On This Day in 1940, soldier and Olympic Gold Medalist Spyros Louis dies

Olympic Spyridon Spyros Louis

Born in Marousi in the North of Athens on January 12, 1873, Spyridon Louis was a Greek soldier who later won the Gold Medal in the Marathon at the first modern Olympic Games in Athens in 1896.

Born into a poor family, Louis was a water carrier for his father.

Following his Gold Medal victory, the King told Louis he could have whatever he wanted, and all he had to do was ask, to which Louis replied - a donkey to help me carry the water.

Olympic Spyridon Spyros Louis
Spyridon Louis.

Spyros Louis became a national hero and celebrity, but he mostly shunned the spotlight, deciding to live a quiet life on his farm instead.

The Olympic Stadium in Athens is named in his honour.

Athens Olympic Stadium : Greece, Athletics, Football, Capacity | Sports venue

He died on March 26, 1940.