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Owen

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  • Owen

    Happy birthday today (Monday) to an Olympic champion who was born 102 years ago today and died at the age of 83 a little over 18 years ago.

    This champion competed in one Olympic Games and won one Olympic gold medal, but not in the hurdles.

    Our birthday athlete was 28 years old when winning that Olympic gold medal.

    Even with knee problems and not the best weather, this individual managed to win the gold medal, however did not set an Olympic record.

    Some of you already know that our birthday person was the last to accomplish something at the Olympic Games.

    Please name our birthday athlete on this first Monday of May.

  • #2
    London 1948

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    • #3
      You got the venue, lonewolf. Now, who won gold in London (1948) even with some knee problems? Hint: The event doesn't usually do very well in bad weather (rain).
      Last edited by DoubleRBar; 05-02-2022, 04:31 PM.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by DoubleRBar View Post
        You got the venue, lonewolf. Now, who won gold in London (1948) even with some knee problems? Hint: The event doesn't usually do very well in bad weather (rain).
        The rain comment suggests to me that this was in a field event.

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        • #5
          KDFINE, you are very perceptive. Yes, it is a field event.

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          • #6
            Remember the PV being rainy in '48. Guinn Smith?

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            • #7
              Owen Guinn Smith was born in Texas 102 years ago today. Very well done, LopenUupunut.

              Guinn Smith and his family moved to Southern California where he graduated from Pasadena High School and then went to college at UC Berkeley, graduating in 1942. He became a pilot in the Army Air Corps (Pacific Theatre) during World War II and his plane was shot down during the war. Smith suffered some injuries from that plane crash including injuries to both knees.

              Guinn Smith competed in the 1948 U.S. Olympic Trials in Evanston, Illinois, where he took second place in the pole vault. Three weeks later he won the Olympic gold medal in London (in the rain). He used a borrowed bamboo pole for his final few jumps and thus became the last Olympic pole vault champion to use a bamboo pole in that competition.

              After the Olympics, Smith worked as an investment counselor and eventually moved to San Francisco, California where he lived with his family for many years. He died in San Francisco at the age of 83 on the third Tuesday of January in 2004. He might be the only track & field Olympic champion to die in San Francisco (I don't know this for a fact).

              Thank you, LopenUupunut, lonewolf, and KDFINE.

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