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Jean Shiley

Inducted: 1993, athlete

Born: November 20, 1911 - Harrisburg, Pennsylvania

High Jump - 1.67 m

As a member of the Haverford Township (Pa.) High School basketball team, Jean Shiley's leaping ability drew the attention of a local reporter, who suggested that she try out for the 1928 Olympic team as a high jumper. Just 16, she made the team, finished 4th at the Amsterdam Games, then began dominating U.S. women's high jumping. Shiley won the national title three years in succession from 1929 to 1931 before tying Babe Didriksen for the title in 1932. The two women then staged one of the greatest one-on-one duels in Olympic history at the Los Angeles Games. They matched each other jump for jump and each cleared 5' 5" to set a world record. In the jump-off for first place, both cleared 5' 5 3/4" but Didriksen's "diving roll" style was ruled inadmissible and Shiney was awarded the gold medal. That world record was to stand for seven years and it remained the American record until 1948. Shiley also set the American indoor record of 5' 3 1/4", which remained unbroken for 38 years. A 1933 graduate of Temple University, Shiley was the captain of the 1932 Olympic women's track and field team.

Records Held
World Record: High Jump - 1.67 m (August 7, 1932 - )

1928 Olympics: High Jump (4th)
1932 Olympics: High Jump - 1.67 m (1st)
1929 AAU: High Jump (1st)
1930 AAU: High Jump (1st)
1931 AAU: High Jump (1st)
1932 AAU: High Jump (1st)

high school: Haverford High School (Haverford Township, Pennsylvania), 1929
undergraduate: Temple (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania), 1933

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