Joie Ray was a gutsy little guy who loved to run whether the opponent was a Kankakee streetcar or a field of world-class runners in the Olympic games.

Although he was only 5-foot-5 and weighed just 118 pounds, Ray was a fierce competitor whose powerful legs drove him past larger and taller runners in the sprint for the finish line.

During his 18-year career as a runner, he held multiple world records, won 17 Amateur Athletic Union titles, and competed in three Summer Olympics. By the time he retired from amateur competition in the late 1920s, his hardware collection totaled more than 450 trophies and medals.

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