You will be redirected to the page you want to view in  seconds.

The Socialympics: Military athletes' Twitter feeds, Instagram pics offer unique view into 2012 games

Aug. 1, 2012 - 12:08PM   |   Last Updated: Aug. 1, 2012 - 12:08PM  |  
  • Filed Under

Event schedule

The coming weeks’ schedule for U.S. military Olympic competitors and which ones you can track on Twitter and Instagram.
July 28 Air pistol
Sgt. 1st Class Daryl Szarenski
July 29 Women’s air pistol
Petty Officer 1st Class Sandra Uptagrafft
July 30 Air rifle
Sgt. 1st Class Jason Parker
July 30-31 Skeet
Sgt. Vincent Hancock (Twitter: @Vincent_hancock)
July 31-Aug 11 Boxing
Sgt. Jamel Herring (Twitter:@jamelherring; Instagram: Jamelherring)
Aug. 1 Sport pistol
Petty Officer 1st Class Sandra Uptagrafft
Aug. 1 Epee fencing
Capt. Seth Kelsey
Aug. 2 Double trap
Staff Sgt. Joshua Richmond (Twitter: @JoshuaRichmond4)
Sgt. Glenn Eller (Twitter:@wgeller3; IG: wgeller3)
Aug. 2-3 Rapid fire pistol
Sgt. 1st Class Keith Sanderson
Aug. 3 Rifle prone
Staff Sgt. Michael McPhail
Sgt. 1st Class Eric Uptagrafft
Aug. 5 Free pistol
Sgt. 1st Class Daryl Szarenski
Aug. 5 Greco-Roman wrestling (55kg)
Sgt. Spenser Mango
Aug. 6 Three-position rifle
Sgt. 1st Class Eric Uptagrafft
Sgt. 1st Class Jason Parker
Aug. 6 Greco-Roman wrestling (120kg)
Sgt. 1st Class Dremiel Byers
Aug. 7 Greco-Roman wrestling (66kg)
Spc. Justin Lester (Twitter:@LesterToLondon)
Aug. 11 50K race walk
Staff Sgt. John Nunn
Aug. 11 Modern pentathlon
Spc. Dennis Bowsher (Twitter:@DennisBowsher)

Marine Sgt. Jamel Herring finishes a sweaty round of hammering away at the speed bag and grabs his iPhone. Ringside as two U.S. boxing teammates spar, he's working angles and taking shots of an entirely different kind.

He's the U.S. Olympic boxing team captain, a welterweight contender for a gold medal in London's Summer Games and the snap-happy self-appointed team Instagrammer.

He's just one of several military athletes offering fleeting windows into their Olympic journeys through social media.

For the uninitiated, Instagram is where social media meets photography, a kind of Twitter for shutterbugs. With 50 million users, the photo-sharing favorite was recently bought by Facebook for a reported $1 billion.

"I love it," gushed Herring during team training camp at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo. He's posted hundreds of photos in the past few weeks. Many are simple smiling snapshots of friends and teammates, but others offer more intimate behind-the-scene glimpses of training and travel on the road to the Summer Games.

At least one athlete has learned the hard way to regret her social media postings. Greek triple jumper Voula Papachristou cut her trip to London short after mocking African immigrants on Twitter. The resulting uproar prompted Greek officials to kick her off the team July 25.

Most athletes, however, just chronicle their daily lives in the spotlight of the world's biggest athletic stage.

Army Sgt. Glenn Eller, U.S. shooting team double trap shooter, has been tweeting through his workups to London.

"This feels like I'm waiting for my 21st birthday, except it is legal to practice," Eller tweeted two days before he was slated to fly to London.

"You know I'm excited if I'm packing more than 3 minutes before walking out the door," he offered two days later, along with the hashtag #needabiggersuitcase.

Army Greco-Roman wrestler Spc. Justin Lester has taken to Twitter with regular updates, as well, sometimes with the occasional bold promise. "Off 2 London tmrw!" he posted July 22. "Thx for the prayers and support! Nxt time I'm on American soil, I'll have a nice shiny gold medal around my neck!"

Answers by RallyPoint

Join trending discussions in the military's #1 professional community. See what members like yourself have to say from across the DoD.

More In OFFduty

Start your day with a roundup of top defense news.

VA Home Loan

Search By:

Product Options:
Zip Code:

News for your in-box

Sign up now for free Military Times E-Reports. Choose from Money and Education. Subscribers: log in for premium e-newsletters.

This Week's Navy Times

This Week's Navy Times

Go mustang
LDO and warrant careers offer more authority, a pay hike and big retirement payout

Subscribe for Print or Digital delivery today!

MilitaryTimes Green Trusted Classifieds Looking to buy, sell and connect on Military Times?
Browse expanded listings across hundreds of military installations.
Faces of valorHonoring those who fought and died in Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.
hall of valorThe Hall of Valor is a searchable database of valor award citations collected by Doug Sterner, a Vietnam veteran and Military Times contributing editor, and by Military Times staff.

All you need to know about your military benefits.

Benefits handbook

Guard & Reserve All you need to know about the Guard & Reserve.

guard and reserve handbook