It all started with a coffee can…
Yes, a coffee can. In 1973, RISE coach Tim Winder walked home from school through the small town of Woodlawn, IL not knowing that the direction of his life was about to take a hard turn. When he arrived home, his dad, Harold Winder, had made him a pole vaulting set up, if you want to call it that. He had mowed a path in the grass for a runway, buried half of a coffee can in the ground for a planting box, tilled up some dirt for a landing pit, and gave Tim a bamboo pole from a roll of carpet to vault with. They both had no idea the spark that had been ignited that afternoon. That day the foundation for RISE had started to be laid…
Tim’s school, Woodlawn High, did not have a track team, but there was nothing that was going to stop him from pursuing his new passion for pole vaulting. With no coach to help him, he began to absorb as much knowledge as he could followed by a ton of practice on his meager backyard set up. All of that practice eventually culminated in an Illinois State Championship and state record for Tim his senior year in 1979, but that was just the start…
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