American Pride Fuels Old Marathoner

Posted at 06/03/2009 9:27 AM | Updated as of 11/05/2009 10:00 AM

LOS ANGELES, CA—They call him Captain America. Running as he always does with an American flag, Jose Nebrida, 67, took a steady pace during the Los Angeles Marathon.  It’s his 166th marathon, and just another check on his goal to run with the flag in all 50 states.

“I’ve done 35 states now, and I’m hoping to finish in two years,” Nebrida said.

Originally from San Juan, Rizal, Nebrida immigrated to the U.S. in 1975 to pursue his masters at the Loyola University of Chicago. He got married, had children, and took on an unhealthy lifestyle.

“I had to change my behavior.  If I don’t change my behavior, I don’t think I’d last long,” said Nebrida about his sedentary lifestyle.  So, at the age of 44 he started running.

The terrorist attacks on 9/11 inspired his current mission.  Nebrida thought of it as a way to pay back the education, generosity and good will he received as an immigrant in America.

At the marathon’s conclusion, Nebrida’s name is nowhere near the top.  But Nebrida does not mind.  After all, there is another marathon, another state, and another finish line far in the horizon for Nebrida to cross with his American flag in hand.