Beyond the myth, the true story of the slogan.
The story of Nike. Just Do It.
By Dan Wieden.
On Monday, July 19, 1976, Gary walked into a gas station in Orem, Utah and approached the attendant whose nameplate read, â€œMax Jensenâ€. He then pulled out a .22 Browning Automatic and instructed Jensen to empty his pockets, which the young Mormon quickly did. Then he told Jensen to go into the bathroom and lie down on the floor with his arms under his body.
Then, inexplicably, Gilmore put the gun close to Jensenâ€™s head. â€œThis one is for me,â€ he said and fired. Then he placed the muzzle right against Jensenâ€™s skull and shot him once again, this time for Garyâ€™s girlfriend, Nicole.
I never knew Gary Gilmore. Although I do know Mikal Gilmore who wrote for Rolling Stone magazine and also authored a book about his brother, as did Norman Mailer.
For some inexplicable reason, I found myself thinking about Gary late one night, years ago, when I was working on a Nike project. I cannot tell you why he came to mind. It was completely out of context.
But I suddenly recalled the morning of his execution by firing squad and how they sat him in a chair and before they pulled the cloth bag over his head, they asked him if he had any final remarks.
He looked at his executioners and said simply . . . â€œLetâ€™s do it.â€