How many people have a passion and know early on what they want to do with their life? Mary Wineberg knew as a young child that she would be a teacher, but not before she became a Gold Medal Olympian. In high school, coaches and her friends encouraged her to take up track, which later resulted in her attending the 2004 Olympics.  She did not win that year, but won the gold in 2008.

According to a local news article, Mary Wineberg’s running abilities were evident as a young child. As early as 4, she could outrun her friends, but she never thought she would excel in track and win at the Beijing Olympics. It wasn’t always an easy road, as she had to work to gain her self-confidence. Ironically, losing at her first Olympics revealed to her the steps she had to take to achieve her confidence.

Once her running career was over, she pursued her childhood passion, teaching. She had never veered from her objective of teaching, only was undecided of what grade to teach. Currently, she teaches second grade at Hyde Park Elementary. Mary stated in this article, “I used to run, it made me happy. And now teaching makes me happy.”

Mary was also adopted. As with many adopted children, she had questions about her birth mother and why she was placed for adoption. After her adoptive mother died, she decided to search for her biological mother. Although hesitant, she wanted to know why she was placed for adoption. She did meet her birth mother which enabled her to have her questions answered and have some closure. “I was very happy for making my peace with my mother and talking with her and hearing her side, because of course there are always two sides to the story. But it was also for me nice to know where I came from.”

To share her story, she discusses her life, running, work, and adoption, Mary wrote a book,  Unwavering Perseverance. It was recently released and can be purchased at //

It is so valuable to find your passion in life; to have dreams and a pathway to achieve them. It is true, life is too short not to do what you are passionate about. “It’s just my will to keep pushing and to keep driving . . . I don’t ever give up.”