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Olympic medalist
Abel Kiviat 1910 Mecca card front.jpg
Abel Kiviat
Medal record
Men’s Athletics
Gold 1912 Stockholm 3000 m team race
Silver 1912 Stockholm 1500 metres

Abel Richard Kiviat was born to Morris (Milton or Moshe)Kiviat and Zelda Kiviat on June 23, 1892; and died on August 24, 1991 was an American Middle distance track event middle distance runner. During the trip to Sweden in 1912 he was cabin mates with Jim Thorpe, a much renowned Native American athlete.[1] He was born on Staten Island in 1892 and died in Lakehurst, New Jersey . Before his death at age 99 in 1991, he was the oldest American Olympic medalist.[2] He competed for and coached the Irish American Athletic Club, and was later a member of the New York Athletic Club.

According to his 1910 trading card; "He attracted attention as a runner when attending high school and became so fast that he linked his fortunes to the Irish American Athletic Club in New York and went into training in 1908. The following month at Travers Island, he won the Junior Championship for one mile for the Metropolitan District, making the fast time of 4:24. In the same year he won the Baxter Cup in the Columbia University races at Madison Square Garden, making the fast time of 4:23 2-5. He broke the world's record in the 2,400 yard relay race, his time for his 600 yards being 1:16, and 5:4 for the entire distance. He also won the Canadian mile championship in 1909 and again in 1910."[3]

He set a 1500 m world record of 3:55.8 min in Cambridge, Massachusetts in June 1912. He competed for the U.S. Olympic Team, as a member of the Irish American Athletic Club, and won a silver medal in the 1500 m at the Olympic Games in Stockholm 1912. He also competed for the US team in the exhibition baseball tournament in Stockholm. (The gold was won by Arnold Jackson).

In 1984, Kiviat was inducted into the International Jewish Sports Hall of Fame, and in 1985, he was inducted into the USA Track & Field Hall of Fame. The Abel R. Kiviat Memorial race is held annually at his alma mater, Curtis High School, in Staten Island, New York. His descendants include Reingold's, Kiviette's and other prominent Jewish families.

A biography, Abel Kiviat: National Champion written by Alan S. Katchen was published in 2009 (Syracuse University Press).

Notes

  1. ^ Katchen, Alan (2009). Abel Kiviat, National Champion: Twentieth-Century Track & Field and the Melting Pot. Syracuse, New York: Syracuse University Press. ISBN 978-0-8156-0939-1.  
  2. ^ New York Times, Aug. 26, 1991.
  3. ^ 1910 Mecca Cigarettes Champion Athlete Series trading card.

References

  • Greenberg, Stan (1987). Olympic Games: The Records. London: Guinness Books. ISBN 0-85112-896-3.  
  • Katchen, Alan (2009). Abel Kiviat, National Champion: Twentieth-Century Track & Field and the Melting Pot. Syracuse, New York: Syracuse University Press. ISBN 978-0-8156-0939-1.  
  • Kieran, John (1977). The Story of the Olympic Games; 776 B.C. to 1976. Philadelphia and New York: J.B. Lippincott Company. ISBN 0-397-01168-7.  

External links

Records
Preceded by
Men's 1500 m World Record Holder
June 1, 1912 – August 5, 1917
Succeeded by
Sweden John Zander
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