Heps Legend Fuchs Passes

Posted: 18 October by Brett Hoover in Alumni, Yale
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Sad news from the Sunday New York Times:

James E. Fuchs, who developed a new way to heave the shot to compensate for a leg injury and used the technique to set world records and dominate shot-putting over two remarkable seasons, died in Manhattan on Oct. 8. He was 82.

Fuchs was a three-time Outdoor Heps champion in the shot put at Yale and his winning toss of 58-2 as a senior in 1950 was not better by an Ivy Leaguer until the 1970s. He twice won Olympic bronze in the event (1948, 1952) and won double gold at the 1951 Pan American Games, taking both the shot and the discus.

As a high school student back in Chicago, he possessed both the size and speed to be considered 1940s version of Bo Jackson, but he was injury-prone and converted to track and field at Yale. In fact, a leg injury left him unable to put the shot in a traditional manner, so he began the process of using a fluid motion, which helped lead to his event dominance.

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