Greg Louganis

Biography of Greg Louganis

Gregory Efthimios "Greg" Louganis (born January 29, 1960) is an American Olympic diver and author who won gold medals at the 1984 and 1988 Olympic Games on both the springboard and platform. He is the only male and the second diver in Olympic history to sweep the diving events in consecutive Olympic Games. In 1984, he received the James E. Sullivan Award from the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) as the most outstanding amateur athlete in the United States.

Louganis is of Samoan and Swedish descent. His teenaged parents gave him up for adoption when he was eight months old and he was raised in California by his adoptive parents, a Greek-American couple. He started taking dance and acrobatics and gymnastics classes at 18 months, after witnessing his sister's classes and attempting to join in. By the age of three he was practicing daily and was competing and giving public performances. For the next few years he regularly competed and performed at nursing homes and other places, including the local naval base. He was also diagnosed with asthma and allergies as a child and was encouraged to keep up his dance and gymnastics classes to help with them; the press later falsely reported that he had taken them up because of his asthma. He also took up trampolining, and at the age of nine began diving lessons, after the family got a swimming pool and he began attempting his trampoline moves on the diving board. He attended Santana High School in Santee, California, and Valhalla High School in El Cajon, California.

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