Willie Davenport

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Willie Davenport
Medal record
Men’s athletics
Competitor for the  United States
Olympic Games
Gold 1968 Mexico City 110 m hurdles
Bronze 1976 Montréal 110 m hurdles
Pan American Games
Silver 1967 Winnipeg 110m hurdles

William "Willie" D. Davenport (June 8, 1943 – June 17, 2002) was an American athlete, born in Troy, Alabama. William attended Howland High School, a suburb of Warren in Northeast Ohio. He attended college at Southern University and A&M College in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. He participated in hurdling events in four Olympic Games, winning the title in 1968. In 1980, he also took part in the Olympic Winter Games as a runner for the American bobsleigh team. Because of the boycott, and the quirk of participating in the Winter Olympics, he was the only U.S. track and field athlete to participate in the 1980 Olympics.[1]

Davenport took part in his first Olympics in 1964, reaching the semi-finals of the 110 m hurdles event. In Mexico City in 1968, he reached the final and won: "From the first step, the gun, I knew I had won the race." In 1972 he finished fourth, and in his third consecutive Olympic 110 m hurdles final, in 1976, he finished third to capture the bronze medal. He finished his Olympic career in Lake Placid competing as a bobsleigh runner, ending up 12th in the four-man competition. Davenport's other achievements include five national championships in the 60 yard hurdles indoor event.

Willie Davenport was a U.S. Army private at the time of his first Olympic participation, he was a Colonel in the United States Army National Guard at the time of his death. He died of a heart attack at age 59 at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport on June 17, 2002.[2]

Davenport's grandson, Derrick Stewart, is a wide receiver for the University of Cincinnati Bearcats.

In 1982 he was inducted into the National Track and Field Hall of Fame.[3] In 1977 he was inducted into the Mt. SAC Relays Hall of Fame.[4]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  • Wallechinsky, David (1984). The Complete Book of the Olympics: 1896 - 1980. New York: Penguin Books. pp. 54–55, 562.

External links[edit]

Records
Preceded by
United States Earl McCullouch
Men's 110m Hurdles World Record Holder
July 4, 1969 — September 2, 1972
Succeeded by
United States Rodney Milburn
Sporting positions
Preceded by
Unknown
Men's 110m Hurdles Best Year Performance
1966
Succeeded by
United States Earl McCullouch
Preceded by
United States Earl McCullouch
Men's 110m Hurdles Best Year Performance
1968 — 1969
Succeeded by
United States Thomas Hill