Darrell Hill’s Biggest Fan Will Join Him In Rio
Darrell Hill ’15 clinched a spot on the U.S. Track and Field team for the Rio Olympics last month. He is one of two Penn State alumni who will compete in the shot put, alongside reigning world champion Joe Kovacs ’11.
Hill’s father, Ellis, will join him in Brazil. However, it didn’t look like Ellis would get that opportunity until this weekend, when a GoFundMe set up by a woman named Liz Pampel Willock raised $8,200 to send Ellis to Rio.
According to Willock, Ellis was her Uber driver one afternoon in Philadelphia. He mentioned that his son qualified for the Olympics and that he wanted to go watch him compete. Willock set up a GoFundMe with the hopes of raising the money that Ellis needed to make it to Brazil. Four days later, the trip surpassed its original goal of $7,500, thanks in part to one huge donation that really touched Darrell.
As of Sunday, all Ellis needed was to secure his passport. He plans on being in Rio from August 15-19. Darrell, meanwhile, got his dad tickets to the U.S. Track and Field events. Men’s shot put qualifications will take place at 9:55 a.m. EST on August 18, and the final will take place at 8:30 that night.
Bill DiFilippo, online editor