Dick Attlesey (Dick Attlesey)

Dick Attlesey

American Track and Field Athlete. The world’s top-ranked high hurdler in 1950 and 1951, he was called the “greatest hurdler of all time” by University of Southern California coach Jess Hill in 1950. Born Richard Harold Attlesey, “Dick” Attlesey broke the world record twice in 1950 for the 110-meter hurdles, getting it down to 13.5 seconds. He also set the 120-yard high hurdles world standard in 1950. He won a Gold Medal in the 110-meter hurdles representing the United States at the 1951 Pan American Games in Buenos Aries. A 3-year (1947-49-50) All-American, he won the 110-meter high hurdles at the 1950 and 1951 National Collegiate Athletic Association Championships and helped lead the USC Trojans to their 1949 and 1950 NCAA crowns. In 1950, he ran the 480-yard shuttle relay in a a record-breaking 57.8 seconds. He had come back strong after missing the 1948 season while recovering from leg injuries that nearly ended his running career. A win in Amsterdam on August 14, 1949 marked the beginning of an undefeated streak of 55 races in the hurdles, which lasted until July 3, 1951, when he lost one race at Bern, Switzerland during a series of high level competitions in Europe. Aside from the one loss, he won all of his hurdles races during his 1951 tour of Italy, France, West Germany, Switzerland and Austria. In January 1952, now an apprentice seaman in the Navy, he set a new American indoor record of 8.3 for the 70-yard high hurdles. But later in January, while still the reigning world champion of his sport, he suffered injuries that seriously affected his form. He failed to gain a spot on the American team for the 1952 Helsinki Summer Olympics, finishing seventh in his heat at the Olympic Trials. That same year he married Elizabeth Ann Robinson. Their daughter, Kim Attlesey, won the 1971 Amateur Athletic Union AAU Junior Olympics title in the long jump and represented the United States in the 1972 Summer Olympics competing in the women’s long jump at Munich, Germany. Dick Attlesey died at the age 55. He is laid to rest beside his second wife Marjorie. Twenty-one years after his death, the six-foot four-inch “Speedy Stringbean,” as he was affectionately called by the press, was inducted into the University of Southern California Athletic Hall of Fame. (bio by: GreenHills Stones Calling)  Family links:  Parents:  Harold William Attlesey (1897 – 1975)  Phoebe Mayo Hamlin Attlesey (1896 – 1984)  Spouse:  Marjorie Ann Holley Attlesey (1936 – 2005) Inscription:ATTLESEYRichardMay 10, 1929 – Oct. 14, 1984MarjorieApr. 12, 1936 – Mar 21, 2005Until We Meet Again


  • May, 10, 1929
  • USA


  • October, 10, 1984
  • USA


  • Green Hills Memorial Park
  • California
  • USA

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