Zoe Ann Olsen-Jensen

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Zoe Ann Olsen-Jensen
Zoe Ann Olsen 1952.jpg
Olsen in 1952
Personal information
Born February 11, 1931 (1931-02-11) (age 87)
Council Bluffs, Iowa, U.S.
Sport
Sport Diving
Club Athens Athletic Club, Oakland

Zoe Ann Olsen-Jensen (née Olsen on February 11, 1931) is a retired American diver. She competed in the 3 m springboard at the 1948 and 1952 Olympics and won a silver and a bronze medal, respectively. During her career Olsen won 12 AAU diving titles, starting from 1945 as a 14-year-old. In 1949 she married the football and baseball player Jackie Jensen,[1] and divorced him in 1968.[2]

Early years[edit]

Born in Council Bluffs, Iowa,[3] Olsen-Jensen is the daughter of Art Olsen and Norma Bragstad Olsen.[4] Her father was a coach and school principal; her mother taught swimming and was described as "a pioneer of synchronized swimming."[3]

She attended La Porte School in La Porte City, Iowa,[5] but she and her mother moved to Oakland, California, when her father enlisted for military service in World War II.[3] In 1949, she graduated from Oakland High School, where she was president of her senior class and an honor student.[6]

Swimming[edit]

When she was 9 years old, Olsen-Jensen won first place in girls' and women's diving in open swimming and diving competition in Neenah, Wisconsin. Olsen-Jensen won over 16 women divers and was the youngest of more than 100 participants in the Fox River Valley meet.[7]

At age 11, Olsen-Jensen was the only two-event winner in Iowa's state Amateur Athletic Union swimming meet, finishing first in diving and the 40-yard freestyle junior race.[8] When she was 12, she finished third in the national junior AAU championship competition.[9]

In 1948, Olsen-Jensen won her first Olympic medal in springboard diving in London.[3]

Personal life[edit]

On October 16, 1949, Olsen-Jensen married Jackie Jensen, a member of the New York Yankees baseball team, in Oakland, California.[10] They had a daughter and two sons[3] and divorced 14 years later.[11] In 1972, she married Don Bramham.[3]

Recognition[edit]

Olsen-Jensen is a member of the Iowa Sports Hall of Fame. In three years, she was nominated for the James E. Sullivan Award, which goes to "the nation's outstanding amateur athlete, woman or man."[12]

References[edit]

  1. ^ File:Zoe Ann Olsen-Jensen and Jackie Jensen 1949.jpg
  2. ^ Evans, Hilary; Gjerde, Arild; Heijmans, Jeroen; Mallon, Bill. "Zoe Ann Olsen-Jensen". Olympics at Sports-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved 2010-12-16. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f Cornelius, Brenda (November 13, 2004). "Where are they now: Zoe Ann Olsen". The Courier. Iowa, Waterloo. p. 2. Retrieved May 10, 2018 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  4. ^ "Maybe You've Heard ..." Argus-Leader. South Dakota, Sioux Falls. May 21, 1938. p. 4. Retrieved May 9, 2018 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  5. ^ "Vinton Students Best Judges At Community Fair". The Courier. Iowa, Waterloo. November 15, 1936. p. 25. Retrieved May 9, 2018 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  6. ^ "Jackie Jensen and Zoe Ann Are Engaged -- It's Official Now". Oakland Tribune. California, Oakland. June 5, 1949. p. 14. Retrieved May 10, 2018 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  7. ^ "Swimmers from Cedar Falls Win at Neenah, Wis". The Courier. Iowa, Waterloo. August 25, 1940. p. 21. Retrieved May 9, 2018 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  8. ^ "LaPorte City Girl, 11, Tops State Swim". The Des Moines Register. Iowa, Des Moines. April 5, 1942. p. 16. Retrieved May 9, 2018 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  9. ^ "Iowan Gets Advice". The Des Moines Register. Iowa, Des Moines. January 31, 1943. p. 18. Retrieved May 9, 2018 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  10. ^ "Yanks' Jackie Jensen Weds Zoe Ann Olsen". Arizona Republic. Arizona, Phoenix. United Press. October 17, 1949. p. 8. Retrieved May 10, 2018 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  11. ^ "Sporting couples work hard to keep marriages intact". Longview News-Journal. Texas, Longview. June 20, 1985. p. 23. Retrieved May 10, 2018 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  12. ^ White, Maury. "Zoe Olsen". DataCentral. Des Moines Register. Archived from the original on 11 May 2018. Retrieved 11 May 2018.