Bobby DouglasThe Gable Museum will host an open house to honor the National Wrestling Hall of Fame Distinguished Member and Glen Brand Wrestling Hall of Fame of Iowa inductee on Saturday, November 2 from 4-7 p.m. at the facility at 303 Jefferson Street in Waterloo, Iowa.
Those planning to attend should RSVP to the Gable Museum online: http://weblink.donorperfect.com/BobbyDouglas
An impressive list of wrestling dignitaries have already indicated they will participate in the event, according to the Gable Museum. Among those who have indicated they will attend in person: Dan Gable, whose name graces the museum; Bruce Baumgartner, President of USA Wrestling, and one of our most decorated International and Olympic wrestlers; Lee Roy Smith, Executive Director of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame and an NCAA champion; Zeke Jones, former USA Wrestling Freestyle coach and now head coach at Arizona State University; Carl Adams, long time head coach at Boston University and 2 time NCAA champion for Iowa State University; and Barry Weldon 1997 NCAA champion for Iowa State University.
In addition, Chris Bono and Tadaaki Hatta will not be able to attend but are sending video messages to Bobby Douglas that the Gable Museum will play during the open house.
During the celebration, Douglas will launch a new tradition for the Gable Museum by autographing his picture wall at the museum at 5 p.m. This inaugural event will be followed by a brief program.
Douglas being the first to sign his own picture wall is totally appropriate, given his history as a pioneer in wrestling. As his National Wrestling Hall of Fame biography states, Bobby Douglas was the first African-American to wrestle in the Olympics (in 1964 and 1968), and the first to captain the U.S. Olympic team (1968).
In addition, Douglas wrestled on six World Championship teams, winning a silver medal in 1966 and a bronze medal in 1970. He was an assistant coach for 10 World and Olympic teams, was World Cup coach in 1987 and Olympic coach in 1992.
Douglas also made history as a collegiate wrestling coach. In 1988 Douglas led Arizona State to the national championship, the only wrestling team title won by a western school. He later led Iowa State to three NCAA runner-up finishes.
Earlier in his mat career, Douglas was a two-time Ohio state high school wrestling champion. He then crossed the Ohio River for his collegiate career at West Virginia's West Liberty State, where he was a NAIA (National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics) national champion in 1962. In 1963, wrestling for West Liberty, he reached the NCAA Division I 130-pound finals and finished second to defending national champion Mickey Martin of the University of Oklahoma. Douglas later transferred to Oklahoma State, where he competed at the 1965 NCAAs at 147 pounds but had to exit the tournament because of injury.
For all these accomplishments, Douglas was welcomed into the National Wrestling Hall of Fame as a Distinguished Member in 1987.
Want to know more about Bobby Eddie Douglas? Check out "Bobby Douglas: Life and Legacy of an American Wrestling Legend" by Craig Sesker.