Emil Zatopek and Dana Zaatopkova
Olympic champions Emil Zatopek and Dana Ingrova seemed meant for each other. Born in the Czech Republic on the same day, 19 September 1922, she grew up to be a javelin thrower and he a runner; they fell in love at the 1948 Olympic Games and married within two and a half months of their first meeting. Four years later, they won gold medals within an hour of each other at the 1952 Olympic Games. When Emil jokingly tried to take credit for Dana's achievement in front of reporters, insisting that his winning run in the 5,000 metres had inspired her victory, Dana retorted: "Really? OK, go inspire some other girl and see if she throws a javelin 50 metres!" Yet it's probable that the couple did inspire each other to greatness: they invented a daring game of "catch" using a javelin instead of a ball, and when Dana broke her leg, Emil ran with her on his shoulders, improving her spirits and his strength. On retiring from competition, they settled in Prague, where Emil taught young runners. They never had children; nor did they tire of each other's company (even when Emil was persecuted for his democratic leanings). Instead, they lived happily together until Emil's death in 2000.