Ti man enjoys Olympic experience

Raymon has autographs from hundreds of athletes and thousands of photos.

Besides meeting people, Raymon loves to sightsee. While in Greece he visited the Parthenon and ran in the Stadia, site of the original Olympics. In China he went to the Great Wall and Xian, one of China's oldest cities.

"I do a lot of reading before I go to an Olympics," Raymon said. "I want to see more than the Games; I want to learn about the country and culture."

Raymon's interest in the Olympics comes from bitter disappointment.

A stalwart athlete in high school in Ogdensburg, he went to Holy Cross College on a football and baseball scholarship. He lost that scholarship when he injured a knee and couldn't play football any more.

Raymon transferred to SUNY-Potsdam. He had never played soccer, but decided to try out for the Bear team. He made it and became an All-America goalie.

In 1963 he was invited to try out for the U.S. soccer team that would play in Pan American Games, a regional competition that often led athletes to the Olympics. He made the U.S. team that was to play in Brazil.

"In those days the athletes had to pay their own way," Raymon recalled. "I was still in school and couldn't afford it. I missed a great opportunity, but I decided one day I'd realize a dream and attend an Olympics."

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