OLYMPICS

Ralph Boston, Olympian, 1st To Jump 27 Feet, Dies At 83

May 3, 2023, 5:00 PM

Ralph-Boston-Olympics-Wales...

American athlete Ralph Boston competing in the long jump at the Welsh Games in Cardiff, Wales, on 24th July 1965. (Photo by Potter/Daily Express/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

(Photo by Potter/Daily Express/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

PEACHTREE CITY, Ga. (AP) — Ralph Boston, the Olympic long jump champion who broke Jesse Owens’ world record then later had his own mark eclipsed by Bob Beamon’s record-shattering leap at the Mexico City Games, died Sunday. He was 83.

The U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee confirmed Boston died Sunday at his home outside of Atlanta.

Boston broke or tied the world record six times during the 1960s. He was the first person to reach the 27-foot mark. His first world record came shortly before the Rome Olympics in 1960 with a jump of 26 feet, 11 inches that surpassed the 25-year-old record held by Owens.

Boston won gold in Rome, then, nine months later, eclipsed 27 feet.

In 1968, Boston was warming up at the Mexico City Games when Beamon jumped 29-2 1/4, shattering the record by nearly two feet in a jump that stands among the greatest single moments in Olympic history.

RELATED: Salt Lake City Winter Olympics Bid More Likely For 2034

Coming off his win in 1960, Boston was favored four years later, but a gusty rainstorm and an unexpected performance by Britain’s Lynn Davies quashed Boston’s hope for a repeat.

Boston won bronze in the 1968 meet where Beamon set his record. In an interview with Mississippi Today, Beamon said it was Boston who came up to him after he had faulted on his first two attempts and suggested he adjust his footwork in the run-up.

“I figured I had better listen to the master, and I did,” Beamon said.

Download the new & improved KSL Sports app from Utah’s sports leader. You can stream live radio, video and stay up to date on all of your favorite teams.

Olympics

Carissa-Moore-Team-USA-Tokyo-2020...

Kyle Ireland

Olympian Carissa Moore Reflects On Tokyo Gold, Hopes To Inspire Youth

Team USA's Carissa Moore reflected on winning a gold medal in Tokyo 2020 and how she hopes to impact young girls in the world.

1 day ago

Ryan Murphy 2024 Paris Olympics Swimming...

Chandler Holt

American Swimmer Ryan Murphy Credits Family For Success In Olympic Journey

Ryan Murphy has won four Olympic gold medals but he couldn't have reached the pinnacle of the swimming world without his family by his side.

2 days ago

Eiffel-Tower-Paris-2024...

Brian Preece

Olympic Athletes Look Forward To Families Being Back In Stands

For 500 U.S. Olympians of varying ages, family ranges from parents, siblings, and spouses to children for others. 

4 days ago

Kim-Smith-Gaucher-2016-Rio-Olympics...

Michelle Bodkin

Three Former Utah Women’s Basketball Players Heading For 2024 Paris Olympics

Team Canada's first 3X3 basketball team to ever qualify for the Olympics will feature three former Utah women's basketball greats.

4 days ago

core hydration classic...

Associated Press

Simone Biles Shines, Gabby Douglas Scratches After Shaky Start At U.S. Classic

Simone Biles certainly looks ready for Paris with more than two months to go before the Olympic games begin.

5 days ago

a'ja wilson...

Brian Preece

Consummate Winner A’ja Wilson Prepares To Lead USA Women’s Basketball In Paris

Winning has become synonymous with A'ja Wilson as championships and personal accolades have followed the basketball star since high school.

6 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Follow @kslsports...

KSL Give-A-Thon

The KSL Sports Zone, KSL 5 TV, FM100.3, 103.5 The Arrow, and KSL NewsRadio have teamed up to raise money for the kids being served by Primary Children’s Care!

ksl-sports-newsletter...

KSL Sports

KSL Sports Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Sign up today for the KSL Sports newsletter. Get the latest Utah sports news delivered to your inbox.

...

KSL Sports

Jazz Notes Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Sign up today for the Jazz Notes newsletter. Get insider analysis, game recaps and opportunities to win tickets!

Follow @kslsports...

The Road Home Mediathon 2023

The KSL Sports Zone and KSLSports.com are proud to support the all-day Mediathon 2023 at the Road Home, an annual tradition to raise money and other essential items for the Road Home, a Homeless Shelter.

3 kids wearing real salt lake jerseys smiling...

Real Salt Lake

6 Reasons You Need to Experience a RSL Matchday

RSL Games are a great way to spend time with your family with fun activities, good food, and traditions you can only experience at the field.

High angle view of the beautiful Rose Bowl Stadium...

KSL Digital Sales

How to Prepare for the 2023 Rose Bowl

Everything you need to know to plan your 2023 Rose Bowl trip in Pasadena, California. This year, the Utes will face Penn State.

Ralph Boston, Olympian, 1st To Jump 27 Feet, Dies At 83