The Colombian Quicksilver

Marshfield High School senior Alexander Garcia-Silver has drawn a lot of attention from the running community for his outstanding distance running in the Coos Bay community. He has been breaking local and state records that have stood the test of time for many years. As a senior at MHS, he is on track to break some of the records set by legendary Coos Bay runner and Olympic athlete Steve Prefontaine. 

His accomplishments in cross country are inspiring to everyone surrounding him, but especially to his teammates. 

“Alex is really motivational, always pushing us to be the best we can be,” said MHS sophomore Bodey Lutes, who runs with Garcia-Silver.

Garcia-Silver’s uplifting story has very humble beginnings. He was born in the South American country of Colombia, a mountainous Latin American region with a poverty rate over 39%. Composed of many rural communities, Colombia’s bleak living conditions are difficult to maneuver. When he was just two years old, Garcia-Silver was adopted and traveled to the U.S. As a native Colombian, he has traveled back to his birth country to visit and embrace his culture. He feels he represents them through his running. 

“The weight of a whole country,” said Garcia-Silver. “You are representing an image more than yourself.”

 As well as being a phenomenal running force in the U.S., he has also joined running competitions in his native Colombia. During his junior year at MHS, he traveled to South America to compete in the U18 South American 3,000 meter championships, where he clinched 1st place. Since Colombia is very rural, some towns don’t even have a track.

 “Way less kids participate because they don’t have organized sports and it’s all through clubs,” said Garcia-Silver.

Growing up in the U.S. has been beneficial for him, as he has been running since he was young. A combination of hard work and dedication created the magic bland that made him into the athlete he is today. 

“My dad would go on runs and sometimes he would let me go with him,” said Garcia-Silver. “I really got into it when I ran the Pre in fourth grade. Then in sixth grade I finally did cross country competitively and have been doing it ever since.”

While his 145 pound, 5 foot 8 inch physique really lends itself to his running success, it has been Garcia-Silver’s lung capacity that he believes has made him the successful runner he has become. His lungs are perfect for running because of his ancestors who lived in the Colombian mountains. 

As a senior this year, Garcia-Silver has been applying for scholarships and contacting colleges in the hopes that his strides will carry him into his future. Not only is he one of the fastest runners in the country, but he also maintains a 4.0 GPA, making him an asset to any college campus or running team.