For a chance to live without the risk of danger, Abdihakem Abdirahman and his family had to flee his home country of Somalia in 1990.
From his NBC Olympics bio:
Born in Somalia, Abdirahman and his family moved to the United States in 1990 to escape civil war. The conflict, among several of the nation's tribes, made front page news in December 1992, when U.S. troops were sent to help preserve peace and distribute food. Abdirahman was adamantly in favor of the American intervention. His father, Mahamed, worked as a production head for Conoco, an American oil company. The position put him in great danger, so the family moved to the U.S. and settled in Tucson, Arizona.
Strictly known as a 10,000-meter runner once he took up the sport, Abdirahman qualified for three straight Summer Olympics in 2000, 2004 and 2008. Unfortunately, he did not win a medal as a 10th place finish during the Sydney Games 12 years ago remains his best result on the big stage.
Now a marathoner, Abdirahman is in his fourth straight Olympics and his best time of 2 hours, 8 minutes and 56 seconds can challenge for a medal. With some good teammates to help push the pace, he'll be in the mix.