|Representing the United States|
|Pan American Games|
Nineteen-year-old Detroit native and Mackenzie High School graduate, Barbara Sue Gilders represented the United States in the sport of springboard diving at the 1956 Summer Olympics in Melbourne, Australia.
Coached by four-time Olympic medalist, Clarence Pinkston, Gilders entered the Games as the 1956 U.S. Amateur Athletic Union champion, and Olympic Trials silver medalist. During her lone Olympic competition, Barbara narrowly missed a trip to the medals podium.
Glimpse at sports history
Emerging from the preliminary rounds in third place, Gilders ended up fourth overall with a score of 120.76. The bronze medal went to Irene MacDonald at 121.40 - Canada's first Olympic diving medalist.
Jeanne Stunyo of Gary, Indiana earned the silver medal, and the 1956 Olympic gold medal in springboard diving was awarded to Patricia McCormick of Seal Beach, California. Gilders and Stunyo were sponsored at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials by the Detroit Athletic Club.
Barbara Gilders-Dudeck demonstrated her level of preparation for the 1960 Olympics by winning National AAU indoor titles on the one-meter (1958) and three-meter board (1959). In June 1959, Barbara took first place at the Pan American Games Trials; later that summer, in what would be her final international competition, Gilders-Dudeck won a bronze medal at the Pan American Games.
- Barbara Gilders (Dudeck) is the younger sister of Fletcher Gilders, a two-time NCAA Diving Champion at Ohio State. Brother "Fletch" was also a Hall of Fame Diving Coach for Ohio University and three-time NCAA Division III Coach of the Year at Kenyon College.
- John and Barbara Gilders-Dudeck are the parents of Diane Dudeck, the one-meter springboard gold medalist at the 1981 U.S. Indoor Diving Championships. While competing for the University of Michigan in 1984, Diane Dudeck was named Big Ten Conference Diver of the Year for her gold medal performance on the one-meter board; Diane was also a 1984 NCAA All-American. Two years later, on the one-meter board, Miss Dudeck earned a silver medal and All-American honors for the University of Arkansas at the 1986 NCAA Championships.
- Barbara's husband, John Dudeck, was an accomplished athlete. A product of Detroit's Western High School, John swam at the collegiate level for Michigan State University. A former Big Ten Conference record holder and two-time Big Ten titlist in the 100-yard breaststroke (1953, 54); Dudeck was a nine-time All-American for the Spartans (1953–55).
Of further note
The 79-year legacy of Detroit-Mackenzie High School includes two alumni who competed in the Olympic Games. Delisa Walton (a 1979 graduate) represented the United States in the sport of track and field, at the 1988 Seoul Games. Both Delisa Walton and Barb Gilders were Olympic Trials silver medalists, and Olympic finalists; both were also Pan American Games medalists who narrowly missed an Olympic medal.
References and Links
- From the Hy Peskin Collection
- http://www.goggleawards.org/USASWeb/_Rainbow/Documents/1196d3cb-681c-4190-80fb-d5170d94bcc3/1956.pdf[permanent dead link]
- Detroit Athletic Club
- Diving Results: 1959 Pan American Games
- Mackenzie High School (Michigan)
- Delisa Walton-Floyd