Kenny Moore
Moore (right) in 1971
Personal information
Born(1943-12-01)December 1, 1943
Portland, Oregon, U.S.[1]
DiedMay 4, 2022(2022-05-04) (aged 78)
Kailua, Hawaii, U.S.
Height183 cm (6 ft 0 in)
Weight64 kg (141 lb)
Event(s)Mile to marathon, steeplechase
ClubOregon Track Club
University of Oregon
Achievements and titles
Personal best(s)Mile – 4:04.2 (1966)
3000 m – 8:49.4 (1966)
5000 m – 13:46.4 (1970)
10000 m – 28:47.6 (1970)
Mar – 2:11:36 (1970)[2][3]

Kenneth Clark Moore (December 1, 1943 – May 4, 2022) was an American Olympic road running athlete and journalist. He ran the marathon at the 1968 and 1972 Summer Olympics, finishing fourth at the latter.

Early life

Moore was born in Portland, Oregon,[4] on December 1, 1943.[5][6] He attended North Eugene High School in Eugene, Oregon.[4] He went on to study at the University of Oregon, where he raced for the Oregon Ducks under coach Bill Bowerman. He received All-American honors on three occasions and was pivotal to the Ducks winning the team national championship at the 1964 and 1965 NCAA University Division Outdoor Track and Field Championships.[4]

Running career

After graduating from Oregon, Moore won the 1967 USA Cross Country Championships, as well as the USA Marathon Championships four years later.[4][2] He also won the San Francisco Bay to Breakers – the largest footrace in the world – six times in a row from 1968 to 1973, becoming the all-time leader in victories in the race.[7][8]

Moore first ran the Olympic marathon at the 1968 Summer Games. He led early in the final,[5] but finished fourteenth after suffering from severe blisters.[7] It was still the best performance among American competitors.[5] He joined the U.S. Army later that year, but was permitted to continue racing. He set the record for best time among American runners at the Fukuoka Marathon in 1969 and 1970, finishing runner-up in the latter race. Upon completing his military service, he returned to the University of Oregon and graduated with a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing in 1972.[9] He again participated in the marathon at the Summer Olympics that year. Although he tripped and fell one mile into the race, he recovered and narrowly failed to win a medal after finishing fourth.[4][9]

Later life

After retiring from competition, Moore became a journalist and screenwriter. He had a 25-year career covering athletics for Sports Illustrated. At the end of his career at Sports Illustrated, Moore took up the plight of former competitor Mamo Wolde, who was falsely imprisoned in Ethiopia. In his story, Moore championed Wolde's release from prison, a release that came months before Wolde's death.[4]

Moore was also one of the athletes who pushed for the Amateur Sports Act of 1978. He also helped to write the screenplay for the 1998 biopic Without Limits, a film about former Oregon Ducks standout Steve Prefontaine.[10] Moore also had an acting role (as a water polo player) in the 1982 Robert Towne film Personal Best, starring Mariel Hemingway, Scott Glenn, and Patrice Donnelly.[11] Stanley Kauffmann of The New Republic wrote Moore "looks like the youngest mummy in screen history".[12]

Moore published a book in 2007 about his former coach titled Bowerman and the Men of Oregon.[13] He was also the author of Best Efforts: World Class Runners and Races (Doubleday 1982).[4] He was inducted into the University of Oregon Athletic Hall of Fame in 1997.[14] He was later honored in the Oregon Sports Hall of Fame in 2019.[15]

Personal life

Moore married his first wife, Roberta (Bobbie) Conlan, in 1968. She was photographed embracing him at the finish line of the Olympic marathon that same year. They divorced in 1979.[9] He subsequently married Connie Johnston Moore, and remained married to her until his death. They resided in Hawaii during his later years.[4][9]

Moore died on May 4, 2022, in Kailua, Hawaii. He was 78 years old.[4][7]


  1. ^ Welcome – Archived October 27, 2018, at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved on August 21, 2017.
  2. ^ a b Evans, Hilary; Gjerde, Arild; Heijmans, Jeroen; Mallon, Bill; et al. "Kenny Moore". Olympics at Sports Reference LLC. Archived from the original on April 18, 2020. Retrieved August 21, 2017.
  3. ^ "Ken Moore".
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i Goe, Ken (May 4, 2022). "Kenny Moore, former UO distance runner, 2-time Olympian, journalist and author, dies at 78". The Oregonian. Portland, Oregon. Archived from the original on May 5, 2022. Retrieved May 5, 2022.
  5. ^ a b c Benyo, Richard; Henderson, Joe (2002). Running Encyclopedia. Human Kinetics. p. 218. ISBN 978-0-7360-3734-1.
  6. ^ "Kenny Moore – Profile". World Athletics. Retrieved May 5, 2022.
  7. ^ a b c Williams, Madison (May 4, 2022). "Former Olympian, Sports Illustrated Writer Kenny Moore Dies at 78". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved May 5, 2022.
  8. ^ Bay to Breakers winners. (May 23, 2017). Retrieved on August 21, 2017.
  9. ^ a b c d Robinson, Roger (May 4, 2022). "Kenny Moore, Olympian and Masterful Writer on Running, Dies at 78". Runner's World. Retrieved May 5, 2022.
  10. ^ Hayward Field is as storied as Prefontaine himself. (June 8, 2007). Retrieved on August 21, 2017.
  11. ^ Canby, Vincent (February 5, 1982). "'Personal Best,' Olympic Love". The New York Times.
  12. ^ "Stanley Kauffmann on films". The New Republic. March 3, 1982.
  13. ^ Bowerman Served as Running Pioneer. (January 27, 2007). Retrieved on August 21, 2017.
  14. ^ "Kenny Moore (1997)". University of Oregon Athletics. Retrieved May 5, 2022.
  15. ^ "Kenny Moore – Track & Field". Oregon Sports Hall of Fame & Museum. Retrieved May 5, 2022.