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Cunningham, Glenn V.locked

(04 August 1909–10 March 1988)
  • Adam R. Hornbuckle

Extract

Cunningham, Glenn V. (04 August 1909–10 March 1988), track and field athlete, was born in Atlanta, Kansas, the son of H. Clint Cunningham, a water well driller and odd-jobsman. His mother’s name is unknown. At age seven, Glenn and his thirteen-year-old brother Floyd were engulfed in a schoolhouse fire. Floyd received severe burns to his entire body and died days later. Glenn survived the fire but sustained near-crippling burns to his legs. After being bedridden for nearly six weeks, during which time doctors almost amputated his legs, Cunningham recovered his mobility through daily massage from his mother to restore the circulation to his badly scarred legs. Once he was able to walk again, he soon began running. As a result Cunningham increased his physical endurance and easily outran boys twice his age. A county mile-run champion at age thirteen, he excelled at the distance on the high school track team in Elkhart, Kansas. Cunningham reigned as the nation’s best high school miler in 1930, winning the event in the Kansas Relays (Interscholastic Division) in a national high school record of 4:31.4. He won the high school state championship in the mile and lowered the record to 4:28.4. As a final measure of his ability, Cunningham lowered the record to 4:24.7, winning the national interscholastic mile championship....

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