News02 Dec 2005

Legendary American Long Jumper Bob Beamon donates unique charcoal print to the IAAF


Bob Beamon donated charcoal print (© Bob Beamon)

Bob Beamon, the legendary 1968 Long Jump Olympic champion, donated a limited edition charcoal print featuring his Olympic and World record jump to the IAAF Humanitarian project Athletics for a Better World.

On 18 October 1968, Beamon made track and field history by setting an Olympic and World Long Jump record of 8.90m. He broke the existing World mark by an impressive 55 centimetres, prompting Soviet rival and former World record holder Igor Ter-Ovanesyan to say, "Compared to this jump, we are as children."

Legendary sports writer Dick Schaap labelled Beamon’s performance “The Perfect Jump” and a new adjective was created, "Beamonesque", meaning 'a spectacular feat.'

Today, Bob Beamon's Olympic record still stands after 37 years and is the longest standing record in modern day Olympic history. In 1983, Beamon was inducted into the inaugural class of the United States Olympic Hall of Fame.

An outstanding jumper while at Jamaica High School, Beamon set a national high school record for the Triple Jump in 1965. At the University of Texas in El Paso, he demonstrated his versatility when he won the national collegiate indoor Long Jump and Triple Jump. Bob's high school and college records still remain unbroken.

His transition from superstar Olympian to world-class businessman began with his lifelong passion for creating art. In 1995, Beamon entered his artwork into the Biennial Art Festival in Europe and won the competition. It was this recognition that gave him the confidence to take his artwork out into the world.

In 1996, Beamon transferred his original artwork from canvas to silk and launched a line of designer neckties under his own label – The Bob Beamon Collection.

The most impressive part of Beamon’s legend however, is his renowned work with underprivileged children. The Bob Beamon Organization for Youth, Inc, is a non profit organization committed to the welfare of children and hosts the annual Bob Beamon Celebrity Golf & Tennis Classic. Founded in 1997, the yearly event is dedicated to youth related issues such as education, health resources and housing, and has helped thousands of kids take the leap into life!

He is a national spokesperson for the Children's Courts and an advocate against blanket legislation to prosecute children as adults.

An Olympic legend, entrepreneur, corporate spokesperson, community leader, and professional fundraiser, Bob Beamon truly brings "Beamonesque" to everything he touches.

Beamon's limited edition charcoal print will be auctioned at the end of the year and all profits donated to the United Nations Associations: FAO, UNICEF and WFP.