July 10 ~  Going For It I Remember Arthur Ashe

"You've got to get to the stage in life where going for it is more important than winning or losing. " ~ Arthur Ashe

Arthur Ashe In July 1975, tennis great Arthur Robert Ashe Jr. (1943-1993) reached the pinnacle of his career by winning the prestigious men's single championship at Wimbledon. He was the first African American to do so.

"When I took the match point, all the years, all the effort, all the support I had received over the years came together," said Ashe, who was born on this day in Richmond, Virginia.

"Success is a journey, not a destination," he said. "The doing is often more important than the outcome."

At 35, Ashe suffered a heart attack while taking part in a tennis clinic in New York and announced his retirement from competition a year later. In 1983, he had double bypass surgery that included a blood transfusion tainted with the HIV virus.

"I take the good with the bad, and I try to face them both with as much calm and dignity as I can muster,"Ashe explained.

Two months before his death, Ashe appeared before the United Nations General Assembly and implored the delegates to increase funding for AIDS research, then established the Arthur Ashe Foundation for the defeat of the disease.

In 1997, U.S. Tennis Association President Harry Marmion named the new home of the U.S. Open in Flushing, New York the Arthur Ashe Stadium and called Ashe "the finest human being the sport of tennis has ever known."

"True heroism is remarkably sober, very undramatic," Ashe once observed. "It is not the urge to surpass all others at whatever cost, but the urge to serve others at whatever cost."

Box SetsGo for it-- win or lose.