I don't know how many people know the story, but Detroit bid on having the 1968 Summer Olympics. The International Olympic Committee ended up choosing Mexico City, but imagine for a second what having those games in Detroit would have been, for so many reasons.

Tommie Smith (right) of the USA wins the men's 200 metres final at the Olympic Games in Mexico City, 16th October 1968. Bronze medallist John Carlos, also of the USA is on the left. Smith and Carlos are probably best remembered for when they gave the black power salute on the medal podium. (Photo by Douglas Miller/Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

1968 is already one of the most historically memorable years in the entire history of this country. Maybe the most important stories were the assassinations of Dr. Martin Luther King, in April, and Senator (and presidential candidate) Robert F. Kennedy in June; The Democratic Convention in Chicago was in late August of 1968. You had major racial protests (that began prior to 1968), not just in Detroit and Chicago, but across the country. The Vietnam war was raging, and the Soviets were reasserting their stranglehold on Czechoslovakia.

For many Michiganders, there was one bright spot: the Detroit Tigers won the World Series in October of 1968.

But I ran across a story about a failed bid to bring the summer Olympics to Detroit that just fascinated me.

(Official White House photo)

Detroit had been bidding to get the Olympics here since the 1930's; even came close several times. But even with the help of the White House and a popular president, Detroit was snubbed for Mexico City in 1968. But, what if? As it says in the video below, a successful bid would have meant a 100,000 seat stadium where the Fairgrounds were. Wayne State would've been an Olympic Village. Belle Isle the center for rowing events and now much more. But it didn't happen.

(Click on Detroit via YouTube)

The argument can be made that all the bright, shiny new stadiums in the world wouldn't have cured what was wrong, at the core, in Detroit. The city hosted two Super Bowls, political events. and other national sporting championship, and that barely moved the needle. But, in the years leading up to 1968, with the knowledge the Olympics would be coming, could all the diverse groups that made up the population, could they have all worked together? Who's to say? And also who's to say that the civic pride and self-esteem that hosting a successful Olympic games wouldn't have made at least a small difference in the coming years?

Get our free mobile app

LOOK: 50 images of winning moments from sports history

Sometimes images are the best way to honor the figures we've lost. When tragedy swiftly reminds us that sports are far from the most consequential thing in life, we can still look back on an athlete's winning moment that felt larger than life, remaining grateful for their sacrifice on the court and bringing joy to millions.

Read on to explore the full collection of 50 images Stacker compiled showcasing various iconic winning moments in sports history. Covering achievements from a multitude of sports, these images represent stunning personal achievements, team championships, and athletic perseverance.

LOOK: The most famous actress born the same year as you

Many of the actresses in this story not only made a name for themselves through their collection of iconic performances, but also through the selfless, philanthropic nature with which many of them approached their stardom. In an age of flipping the script on societal norms, many of these actresses are using their voices and platforms to be advocates for those who are otherwise unheard.