I'm the proud aunt of an Olympics medalist! My nephew, David Neville III, today won the bronze medal in the men's 400 meter race in Beijing. David is a 2002 graduate of Merrilliville (Ind.) High School and a 2007 graduate of Indiana University, where he was a  music major. He's being trained by Nike.

David is the son of my youngest sister, Judy Neville.  Judy, her husband and David's wife are in Beijing. After the race, Judy called our mother in Indiana to let her know David won a medal.

What's so great about David's victory is that he is a third generation track star, following in the footsteps of his grandfather and his father. My niece Rebecca,  David's youngest sister, is a junior in high school and has won several track and field awards.

JoNina Abron

(article from the Aug. 21, 2008, Post-Tribune of  Hobart, Indiana. That's David diving for the finish.)



David Neville is bringing home some hardware for Northwest Indiana, and all it took was a superhuman effort at the finish.

The 24-year-old sprinter from Merrillville finished third behind American teammates LaShawn Merritt (gold medal) and Jeremy Wariner (silver) to complete a U.S. sweep of the event Thursday night in China (earlier this morning).

And at the end, with the finish line in sight, Neville made like Pete Rose to win the bronze. What a finish. What a dive. Wow!

Neville finished the race in 44.80 seconds, Wariner went 44.74 and Merritt finished with a personal-best 43.75. The broadcast of the race will be shown on tape delay by NBC tonight in its prime time show.

Congrats to David and his entire family. The region can now say it's home to an Olympic medalist, with a chance for Neville to bring home another one -- gold perhaps? -- in this weekend's 4 x 400 meter relay, an event the Americans are heavily favored to win.

More to come throughout the day. Check this blog throughout the day and www.post-trib.com for a story to come. I'll also be trying to contact David before he goes to bed.

Exciting way to start the day, isn't it?

OK, an update. Talked to David's sister, Stephanie, just a short while ago. She reports that he said he's feeling fine after the dive across the finish line. No apparent injuries.

He just got off the medal stand about 45 mins ago, as well.

And, I just got an e-mail from Indiana University about the accomplishment. Neville is the Hoosiers' first individual medalist since Willie May took silver in 1960 and he's the first IU medalist in any event since 1984.

"Anytime a former IU track and field athlete performs on the world stage, it brings honor to our program, and we are very proud of David's accomplishment," said Ron Helmer, Indiana director and head coach of track and field.

Neville was a four-time Big Ten champion and a five-time All-American at Indiana in only three years of competition between 2003 and 2005.

Next up for David will be the 4 x 400 meter relay on Friday. The first heat is scheduled to start at 7:10 a.m. CDT.