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IVC student selected to carry Olympic torch

December 09, 2001|By KELLY GRANT, Staff Writer

A first-year Imperial Valley College student will be carrying the Olympic torch in Austin, Texas, on Tuesday as part of the official Olympic torch relay.

Ashley Galbreath, 19, was just a few hours from leaving for Texas when she spoke to a reporter Friday about the upcoming trip.

"I'm a little bit nervous, but I don't think it's hit me yet," Galbreath said.

Galbreath, who now lives in Brawley, is a recent transplant from Sinton, Texas. Her high school softball coach there, Wade Wilson, nominated her to carry the torch.

As a softball player, Galbreath was selfless, Wilson said in a telephone interview from Sinton High School.

"Whatever I asked her to do, she did," Wilson said.

As the younger of two equally talented catchers her sophomore year, Galbreath didn't complain when Wilson had the upperclassman catcher play varsity while Galbreath remained on junior varsity during the regular season.


She put the team first, Wilson said, adding that she always did it "with a smile on her face."

Nominees to carry the torch are supposed to exemplify the spirit of the Olympic movement, according to a nomination Web site.

"I'm glad my community thought of me that way," she said.

"It means a lot," Galbreath said of the honor. "I haven't really shown that it means a lot. I've kept it to myself."

Like other torchbearers, Galbreath will carry the flame over a one-fifth mile stretch before handing it off to the next person.

The 65-day relay began Tuesday in Atlanta and will be carried through 46 states before arriving in Salt Lake City for the Olympic games Feb. 8.

>>Staff Writer Kelly Grant can be reached at 337-3441.

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