Jesse Owens

Track and Field Athlete Jesse Owens Full Name: Jesse Owens [James Cleveland "Jesse" Owens]


Profession: Track and Field Athlete
Why Famous: Considered the greatest and most famous athlete in track and field history.

In less than an hour at the 1935 Big Ten track meet in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Owens set three world records and tied another in what has been called "the greatest 45 minutes ever in sport" and has never been equaled.

Owens won four gold medals in the 1936 Olympic games in Berlin, Germany. As the most successful athlete at the games he single-handedly crushed Hitler's myth of Aryan supremacy.

Born: September 12, 1913
Star Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Oakville, Alabama, USA

Died: March 31, 1980 (aged 66)
Cause of Death: Lung cancer

Historical Events in the Life of Jesse Owens

  • 1935-05-05 Jesse Owens of US sets long jump record at 26' 8½"
  • 1935-05-25 Track and field athlete Jesse Owens equals or breaks 4 world records in 45 minutes at a Big Ten meet at Ferry Field in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Remembered as "the greatest 45 minutes ever in sport".
  • 1936-06-20 Jesse Owens of US sets 100 meter record at 10.2
  • 1936-08-05 At Berlin Olympics, Jesse Owens wins his 3rd Olympic medal
  • 1936-08-09 Jesse Owens wins 4th gold medal at Berlin Olympics
  • 1953-01-19 Jesse Owens named Illinois Athletic Commission secretary
  • 1955-10-18 Track & Field names Jesse Owens all-time track athelete
  • 1973-06-28 Black Sports Hall of Fame forms: Paul Robeson, Elgin Baylor, Jesse Owens, Jim Brown, Wilma Rudolph, Joe Louis and Althea Gibson elected
  • 1984-08-11 Carl Lewis duplicates Jesse Owens' 1936 feat, wins 4 Olympic track golds
  • 1990-03-28 US President George H. W. Bush posthumously awards Jesse Owens the Congressional Gold Medal

Famous People who Died of Lung Cancer