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Sask. athlete carries on ancestors' winning legacy
Published Wednesday, August 9, 2017 6:56PM CST
For 15-year-old runner, Lynnisa Pasap competing in this year’s Saskatchewan First Nations Summer Games is all about staying calm and focused.
“I get ready to have the right mind set you know? So I can believe in myself,” said Pasap.
That belief has already won her two gold medals in the 3000 meter and 2000 meter. She is now determined to win her 3rd gold medal in the 1200 meter, with her father by her side.
“He is like my right hand man. He helps me set up a game plan so I know what I’m doing, so when I get out there, you know it’s not like where I’m going, what am I doing? And I just kind of look forward,” added Pasap.
She can also trace her love of running backwards her ancestors have paved the way long before her.
Pasap was born into a family of runner and is the great, great grand-daughter of the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame legendary runner, Paul Acoose.
According to the Sports Hall of Fame website, in 1908, Acoose placed first in a 10.5 mile race in Regina, running 8 minutes ahead of the other competitors. He then competed professionally, winning a 15 mile run in Winnipeg in a world record time. He also placed second in a 20 mile race at New York’s Madison Square Garden. Paul then defeated the celebrated Onondaga runner, Tom Longboat in a 12 mile race in Toronto. Acoose was inducted into the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame on June 11, 1983, five years after his death.
“Just to see my granddaughter to pick this up and carry it on is a very proud moment for me, it’s overwhelming,” said Kim Acoose, Pasap’s grandmother and Paul Acoose’s granddaughter.
“I believed in her, I knew she always has an ability to be somebody anything she wanted to be,” added Acoose.
True to her Acoose name, Pasap finished her third race far ahead of the group. The family believes the Paul Acoose was there, running right by Pasap’s side.
“I felt him. Every time I raced. I can feel my ancestors watching me and I can feel that power. That’s where I draw some of my inspiration and it runs in my blood. I was just raised that way to become a runner,” said Pasap.
“I know he was there. I can feel my dad, I can feel my moshom King, I can feel them all,” added Kim Acoose.
This is only the second time Pasap has competed in the games and her first time competing in athletics. Pasap says she will now keep her eyes on the next competition.
The games wrap up with the closing ceremonies on Friday.