Wednesday, July 30, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Villanova track great Frank Budd dies at age 74

SERVICES WILL BE Monday at Villanova University for Olympic sprinter and former 100-yard dash world recordholder Frank Budd, who died this week at 74 in Marlton.

Daughter Anitra Speight confirmed that he died Tuesday of natural causes.

He won three NCAA individual championships, was a two-time Penn Relays champion and went on to represent the United States at the 1960 Summer Olympics in Rome, where he finished fifth. He also ran on the U.S. 100-meter relay team, which won preliminary rounds but was disqualified in the final after Budd handed off the baton outside the passing zone. Had the result stood, it would have been a world-record relay time.

The next year, while still a student at Villanova, Budd set world records in the 100-yard dash and the 220-yard straight, and was a member of a world record 4x100 relay team.

The record in the 100, which gave him the unofficial title of world's fastest man, came at a meet on New York City's Randall's Island. The record was later broken by Americans Bob Hayes and Ivory Crockett. Records in the event, which is a bit shorter than the sanctioned 100 meters, stopped being recognized internationally in 1976.

The Asbury Park native also won NCAA and AAU championships in track.

Despite not playing football for the Wildcats, Budd was drafted by the Eagles in 1962 and played wide receiver for a year, followed by a season with Washington, then three for Calgary in the Canadian Football League. In 1995, Budd was one of the first seven inductees named to Villanova's Wall of Fame.

A viewing at 9 a.m. Monday will be followed by a funeral Mass at 11.

He is survived by wife Barbara, two daughters, a son, nine grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

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