Arthur and Johnnie: An Act of Sacrifice and Service

Sometimes one person’s actions and the resulting effects can greatly alter an individual’s course or the entire course of history. In the late 1960s, as the U.S. steadily increased its involvement in the Vietnam War, both Arthur and his brother Johnnie were serving in the military: Arthur in the Army and Johnnie in the Marines. However, due to a rule established after World War II, during a time of war only one family member was required to be on active duty. Unbeknownst to Arthur, Johnnie requested and served an additional tour to ensure that Arthur would not be sent overseas. He hoped it would help Arthur progress in his career and avoid the difficult experience of fighting in Vietnam. Arthur would later go on to win the very first US Open in 1968 while his brother was still serving abroad.

Louis Lovio delves into the story of this act of sacrifice and service, acknowledging Johnnie’s decision. Read more about it in the Times-Dispatch here: http://www.timesdispatch.com/news/local/arthur-ashe-s-little-brother-and-the-sacrifice-he-made/article_9dcc7bf4-46ed-5d26-9802-d9d2d648e3a2.html

You can also watch the Emmy Award winning ESPN 30 for 30 Documentary Short “Arthur and Johnnie” which also explores the subject.

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