|Olympic medal record|
|Representing the United States|
|1948 London||400 m hurdles|
|1948 London||4x400 m relay|
Born in Richton, Mississippi, as the ninth of ten children to a sportive family. Cochran played football and was a one-man track team in the high school. Cochran wanted to go to Tulane University with a football scholarship, but was persuaded by his older brother Commodore, who won a gold medal at 1924 Summer Olympics in 4x400 m relay, to go to Indiana University Bloomington with a track scholarship. Commodore later became also his coach.
After winning the AAU championships in 400 m hurdles in 1939, Cochran was selected to the 1940 US Olympic team to run 400 m flat, 400 m hurdles and 4x400 m relay race. But when the 1940 Summer Olympics were cancelled due to the World War II, Cochran entered the V-7 Navy officer training course in 1942, and went to Miami for training in the Navy's Sub Chaser Training School. He served in the Pacific during the war and attended the University of Southern California in pursuit of graduate degrees in physiology after the war.
Cochran took up athletics again at USC and won his second AAU title in 400 m hurdles in 1948, thus qualifying to the Olympics. In the Olympic final Duncan White from Ceylon went off at a terrific pace, but by half distance Cochran was ahead. He won by a huge margin, beating second-placed White by 0.7 seconds. Cochran won his second gold medal as he ran the third leg of the 4x400 m relay for the winning USA team.
- "USATF announces Class of 2010 Hall of Fame Inductees". USA Track & Field. Retrieved May 30, 2013.
- "Roy Cochran Bio, Stats and Results". Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved May 30, 2013.