Aileen Riggin in 1920
|Full name||Aileen Muriel Riggin|
May 2, 1906|
Newport, Rhode Island
|Died||October 19, 2002
|Height||4 ft 8 in (1.42 m)|
|Club||Women's Swimming Association|
Born in Newport, Rhode Island, she learned to swim at the age of 6, in Manila Bay, and she first started diving in 1919. She competed at the 1920 Summer Olympics in Antwerp, Belgium in the women's springboard diving and won a gold medal, becoming America's youngest ever gold medallist at that time, later surpassed by Marjorie Gestring. She was also America's smallest Olympic winner, at only 4 feet 8 inches (1.42 m) and 65 pounds (29 kg). She later competed in the 1924 Summer Olympics in Paris, and became the only woman to win medals in both diving and swimming; the silver medal in springboard diving and the bronze medal in the 100 meter backstroke.
Riggin won three AAU outdoor and one indoor springboard titles, as well as two swimming relay titles. In 1926, After making the first underwater films and the first slow-motion coaching films for Grantland Rice, she retired from competitions and helped organize exhibitions related to aquatic activities all around the world. Later she made several films in Hollywood, became a successful journalist, and married, changing her name to Howard Soule.
She moved to Hawaii in 1957 with her husband, and in 1967 she was inducted in the Swimming Hall of Fame. She also helped found the Hawaii Senior Games Association. As a result of her fund raising and motivational presentations, she received further accolades in the International Swimming Hall of Fame in 1988.
- List of athletes with Olympic medals in different disciplines
- List of Olympic medalists in swimming (women)
- Aileen Riggin – Olympic athlete profile at Sports-Reference.com
- Aileen Riggin Soule (USA) – Honor Swimmer profile at International Swimming Hall of Fame
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