John Anderson (athlete)

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Not to be confused with Jon Anderson (athlete).
John Anderson 1983 Paraguay stamp.JPG
Personal information
Born July 4, 1907
Cincinnati, Ohio, United States
Died July 11, 1948 (aged 41)
Nankek, Alaska, United States
Height 1.91 m (6 ft 3 in)
Weight 97 kg (214 lb)
Sport Discus throw, shot put
Club NYAC, New York

John Franklin Anderson (July 4, 1907 – July 11, 1948) was an American athlete who competed mainly in the discus throw. He won the gold medal in this event at the 1932 Summer Olympics held in Los Angeles, United States.[1]

Anderson graduated from Cornell University in 1929, where he was a member of the Quill and Dagger society.

Prior to graduation from Cornell, he placed fifth at the 1928 Olympics in the discus throw. He later improved to beat the world record holder, Paul Jessup, at the 1932 Final Trials. He then took the gold medal in Los Angeles with a new Olympic record. He won the AAU title in 1933 and in June 1936 he had the best throw of his career in winning the Eastern Olympic Trials, 165-9 (50.62 m), but he failed to make a third consecutive Olympic team. Anderson was also an above-average performer with the shot (55 feet) and won the 1929 IC4A indoor shot put title. While at Cornell, Anderson played tackle on the football team for three years, was on the track team for three years, captaining it as a senior, and was president of the student council in his last year. Anderson was thought by Hollywood to have "dazzling masculine beauty" and after the 1932 Olympics he stayed on in California to star in the film "Search for Beauty". Later, experience gained in the Pacific during the war as a lieutenant commander in the naval reserve led to his obtaining a post as chief navigator of a salmon fishing fleet. While on an expedition some 700 miles north of Anchorage, he tragically suffered a brain hemorrhage and died immediately, aged only 41.[1][2]


  1. ^ a b "John Anderson Bio, Stats and Results". Retrieved 1 February 2013. 
  2. ^ Cordner Nelson (1970) Track and Field, The Great Ones, Hardcover, Pelham