John Curtis Thomas (March 3, 1941 – January 15, 2013) was an American track and field athlete who set several world records in the high jump using the straddle technique. As a youth, he earned the Eagle Scout award. At the age of 17, while a freshman at Boston University, Thomas became the first man to clear 7 feet (2.13 m) indoors. He subsequently pushed the world indoor record to 7'1½" (2.17 m), and broke the world outdoor record three times, with a career best jump of 7'3¾" (2.22 m) in 1960 while just 20 years old. Thomas' meteoric career briefly captivated the track world, but he failed to win an Olympic gold medal, despite being favored to win in both his efforts. In 1960, he took the bronze medal behind Russia's Robert Shavlakadze (gold), and Valeriy Brumel (silver). In 1964 he was bested again by Brumel, who cleared the same top height as Thomas, but was declared the winner based on fewer misses at lower heights. ….. to know more, please go to wikipedia.
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