Obama’s win inspires a look back at other pioneers

Bill Willis is recognized as football’s Jackie Robinson, a racial pioneer who was the first African-American to play in the NFL.

Doug Williams was the first African-American to quarterback his team to a Super Bowl victory.

Two seasons later, Art Shell became the first African-American to be named an NFL head coach.

In 2002, Ozzie Newsome became the first African-American general manager.

And in 2006, Tony Dungy and Lovie Smith were the first two African-American head coaches to take their teams to the Super Bowl, with Dungy emerging as the victor and the history maker.

As memorable as each of these milestones was, there is now one that dwarfs all others. The mere idea of it led Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb to vote for the first time in his life. The actuality of it later brought grownups in the sports world and the real world to tears.

Barack Obama is the first African-American president. It is a sentence some imagined they would never read. It is two days after the victory, and it is as incredible now as it was then as it will be forevermore.

It is the most significant victory of our lives.

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