A couple of months ago they were accepting nominations for people to carry the torch through Atlanta. A person in the Bridge Design office at work nominated John Tiernan, who supervises all the design groups. She had to write a short paragraph about why he should be picked. John is an avid runner, active in his church, has spent thirty years as an outstanding engineer design bridges for Georgia, and is generally a good guy. Guess what? He was picked.
Yesterday was the big day. The torch had been flying to every city that had ever hosted an Olympics, visiting Los Angeles and St. Louis earlier, and on its way to New York. John was selected to take the torch from in front of Publix on Ponce de Leon up North Highland to around where Surin is located. This was a huge thrill and honor for him and he was ecstatic. Coca Cola sponsored all the runners and allowed them to keep their torches.
A lot of current and former workers from Bridge Design and DOT went out yesterday to see him. There wasn’t a big crowd, but it was respectable. People came out beforehand passing out commemorative flags from sponsors Coke and Samsung. Then some Coke trucks came by giving out free C2 which is like Coke light (I got a can; it tasted a lot like regular Coke but some said it was a little weaker). A guy in a wheelchair zipped up the street with the torch anchored to his chair. Then he held it up and John lit his torch from that guy’s. And he was off.
It was pretty neat and I was glad to see a regular person from DOT, not one of the more political higher ups, have the honor of carrying the torch. Other people picked included the mayor, Billy Payne, Evander Holyfield, Nadia Comaneche, and others. What a great thing to get to do and all because someone thought to nominate him!