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Grenada declares holiday for 1st Olympic medal

Monday - 8/6/2012, 8:34pm  ET

ST. GEORGE'S, Grenada (AP) - The island of Grenada has erupted in celebration over the small Caribbean nation's first-ever Olympic medal.

People danced, cheered and waved flags in the streets Monday after Kirani James won the gold medal in the 400-meter run with a time of 43.94 seconds. Hundreds had gathered at outdoor viewing sites to watch the race.

The 19-year-old is the first non-U.S. runner to break the 44-second barrier in the race. His time is the fastest ever by a Caribbean athlete in the 400-meter.

The government of Grenada has declared Tuesday afternoon a holiday to mark the feat. Prime Minister Tillman Thomas calls James' victory an inspiration to the country.


(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)