Centenarian Bill Brown

Today on Oldest Olympians we wanted to provide an update on an Olympian that had been listed as William C. “Bill” Brown. Brown had been identified as the track athlete who represented Great Britain in the 3,500 metres race walk at the 1908 London Olympics and was eliminated in round one. He was of note to Oldest Olympians because he was born December 7, 1878 and died August 25, 1980, which made him 101 years, 262 days old.

(Bernard Brown)

Thanks to research by Rob Gilmore, we now know that while Bill Brown did reach the age of 101 and was at one time a member of the Surrey Walking Club, he was not the individual who competed at the Games. That person, also from the Surrey Walking Club, was actually Bernard Clayton Brown, born January 8, 1878 and died March 22, 1935. Brown worked as a post office employee and was a successful rower before taking up race walking. He continued competing into his 50s.

Thus, while both Bernard and Bill had notable walking careers, only Bernard was an Olympian and only Bill was a centenarian. Thus, we have had to removed this competitor from our list of centenarians several years after having added him.