Alice Coachman, first black woman to win Olympic gold, dead

Alice Coachman, first black woman to win Olympic gold, dead

ALICE COACHMAN:This July 8, 1948, file photo shows Alice Coachman of Albany, Ga., clearing the bar at five feet to win the running high jump in the Women's National Track Meet in Grand Rapids, Iowa. Photo: Associated Press

Alice Coachman, (center), of Albany, GA., stands on the winner’s section of the Olympic podium at Wembley Stadium, Wembley, England, August 7, 1948, to receive the gold medal for winning the women’s high jump. At left is D.J. Tyler of Great Britain, who placed second, and at right is M.O.M. Ostermeyer of France who placed third. Both Coachman and Tyler cleared the bar at 5 feet 6 inches. Summer Olympics London England 1948.

Legendary U.S. athlete Alice Coachman, who became the first black woman to win Olympic gold, has died at the age of 90.

The track and field icon went into cardiac arrest and passed away at a hospital in Albany, Georgia, on Monday, months after suffering a stroke.

Coachman won her place in the Olympic history books at the 1948 London Games, where she competed in the high jump and was awarded the gold medal.

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She was presented with the prize by England’s King George VI, the late father of current monarch Queen Elizabeth II, and was later invited to the White House, where she was congratulated on her sporting achievement by U.S. President Harry S. Truman.

The sportswoman, who was later known as Alice Coachman Davis, also made history as the first African-American to earn an endorsement deal in 1952, when she signed on to promote Coca-Cola.

She was officially recognized as one of the 100 greatest Olympians in history at the 1996 Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta, Georgia.


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