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For 84 days the Olympic flame was carried across America,
traveling through 42 states and the nation's capital, until it
finally arrived in Atlanta last night. Some 10,000 men, women
and children were the keepers of that flame, holding their
torches aloft so that millions more could see the icon that has
come to represent the spirit of the Games. It was the longest
relay since the tradition took its present form 60 years ago. In
the end only the final torchbearer, the man or woman who will
light the cauldron at Olympic Stadium tonight, will linger in
our minds. But until then, like this solitary runner, his or her
identity remains unknown to all but a few.

COLOR PHOTO: PHOTOGRAPH BY TERRY SCHMITT/ACOG [Olympic torch runner's feet and shadow on pavement]

COLOR PHOTO: PHOTOGRAPHS BY J.D. CUBAN/ALLSPORT Rafer Johnson, 1960 gold medalist in the decathlon, started the landmark relay on April 27 in Los Angeles (left). Along the way, the torch made a stop at Niagara Falls, passed through the Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs and spent a night with the First Family. [Rafer Johnson holding torch outside Los Angeles Memorial Coleseum while group of children in international costumes cheer]

COLOR PHOTO: PHOTOGRAPHS BY BILL SIKES/AP [See caption above--Two torch bearers with police escorts at Niagra Falls]

COLOR PHOTO: PHOTOGRAPHS BY TERRY SCHMITT/ACOG [See caption above--Torch bearer and assistant running up hill in Colorado]

COLOR PHOTO: PHOTOGRAPHS BY RUTH FREMSON/AP [See caption above--Nightime view of Olympic flame burning on stationary stand set on front lawn of White House]

COLOR PHOTO: PHOTOGRAPHS BY ROD AYDELOTTLE/WACO TRIBUNE-HERALD By any old means of transport, the torch was flown from Waco to Bryan, Texas, in a biplane; delivered from Cozad to Kearney, Neb., by Pony Express; hauled up the Erie Canal on a mule barge; and kept on track by a New Orleans trolley. [Spectators watching biplane take off]

COLOR PHOTO: PHOTOGRAPHS BY TERRY SCHMITT/ACOG [See caption above--man holding Olympic torch on horseback]

COLOR PHOTO: PHOTOGRAPHS BY MICHAEL OKONIEWSKI/AP [See caption above--torch resting on stand on wooden barge filled with people in late nineteenth century costume]

COLOR PHOTO: PHOTOGRAPHS BY TERRY SCHMITT/ACOG [See caption above--Olympic torch held by rider on trolley car]

COLOR PHOTO: PHOTOGRAPHS BY CHRIS MOOREHEAD/ POTOMAC NEWS Turning out along the torch route in all their glory and in vast numbers, proud Americans took liberties at the Stafford County (Va.) Courthouse; had a hand in the proceedings in Cedar Rapids, Iowa; focused on the flame at the Empire State Plaza in Albany, N.Y.; and pledged their allegiance in flag pillowcases in Enumclaw, Wash. [Woman dressed as Lady Liberty]

COLOR PHOTO: PHOTOGRAPHS BY TERRY SCHMITT, ACOG [See caption above--torch bearer allowing spectators to touch torch]

COLOR PHOTO: PHOTOGRAPHS BYM,PAUL BUCKOWSKI/AP [See caption above--people photographing Olympic torch]

COLOR PHOTO: PHOTOGRAPHS BY TERRY SCHMITT/ACOG [See caption above--children wearing pillowcases painted with American flag]