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Black History Month - Day 15, We honor The Dibaba Sisters

From Valencia Townes - Nashville Chapter

Black History Month - We Honor You - Day 15

Greetings and happy Black History Month!

On Day 15, We honor The Dibaba Sisters.

  • Do you know who they are?

  • Do you know what they did?

Read on to find out. Enjoy!


We honor The Dibaba Sisters

Just like tennis stars Serena and Venus Williams, the Dibaba Sisters have carved themselves into a brand that will be difficult to beat; that of the fastest family on earth. Tirunesh, Genzebe, Ejegayehu, Anna, and Melat are from Ethiopia, the only siblings in recorded history to hold concurrent world records, and boast four Olympic gold medals, two silver medals, three bronze and 15 world championships.

The sisters were inspired into athletics by their cousin Derartu Tulu, whose name is in the books of history as the first black African woman to win an Olympic gold medal in the 1992 games. Tulu also emerged top at the New York City Marathon in 2009 when she was 37.

Tirunesh holds three Olympic gold medals, five world championship medals, and is also the 5000m world record holder. She got married to fellow track-and-field Olympic medalist Sileshi Sihine in 2008 at a wedding ceremony that drew half a million people and was televised nationally in Ethiopia.

The family's eldest sister, 40-year-old Ejegayehu, boasts a silver medal in the 10,000m at the 2004 Athens Olympics, and bronze medals in both the 5000m and 10,000m at the 2005 World Championships. Genzebe, the younger sister, won the IAAF’s Athlete of the Year award in 2015, which is the most coveted honor in athletics after breaking her first outdoor world record (1500m) and winning the 1500m title. She broke three world indoor records in a span of two weeks in 2014, a feat that saw her crowned the Laureus World Sportswoman of the Year award.

The Dibaba sisters grew up in a round mud hut that had no electricity, something that could arguably have contributed to them working their heels off to run away from the biting squalor, and they did. Now, the Dibabas are swimming in wealth, having invested in real estate, owning multiple buildings in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, as well as the five-star Tirunesh Hotel.

Black History Month - We Honor You Day 15
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