Herb Douglas was a track and field star who won a bronze medal in long jump at the 1948 Summer Olympics in London.
Herb Douglas’ legacy
Growing up in Pittsburgh, Douglas was a multi-sport athlete. He was the first Black player on the basketball team at Taylor Allerdice High School, and he played football and competed in track and field as well. At the University of Pittsburgh, Douglas won a number of college championships in the long jump and the 100-yard dash. He took that success to the Olympics, where he jumped 24 feet, nine inches for a bronze medal. He was the first person from Pittsburgh to medal at the Olympics.
After his Olympic victory, Douglas worked for Pabst Brewing Company. Later, he became a vice president at Moet Hennessey USA. Often celebrated in his hometown, Douglas had a street named for him and was in the inaugural class of the University of Pittsburgh Sports Hall of Fame. Prior to his death, he was the oldest living Olympic medalist from the U.S.
Douglas’ advice for runners
“Keep your form. Try to get into a rhythm. And keep on going.” —from a 2002 interview for Psyched Online
Tributes to Herb Douglas
Full obituary: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette