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Sylvia Ruuska

Biographical information

Medals OG
Gold 0
Silver 1
Bronze 1
Total 2
TypeCompeted in Olympic Games
SexFemale
Full nameSylvia Eliina•Ruuska
Used nameSylvia•Ruuska
Born4 July 1942 in Berkeley, California (USA)
Died7 February 2019
Measurements173 cm / 63 kg
AffiliationsStanford Cardinal, Stanford (USA)
NOC United States

Biography

Sylvia Ruuska developed through the age-group swim program and, together with her younger sister Pat, was a star performer on her father’s Berkeley YMCA team that twice won the AAU national team championship. She set five world records and won 20 AAU titles, including the 400 y individual medley for five straight years from 1956. She was aged only 14 when she won her two medals at the 1956 Games. At the 1959 Pan American Games she won silver in the 400 m freestyle. On her second Olympic appearance in 1960 at Rome, she was appointed captain of the women’s swim team, but swam only the heats of the freestyle relay.

Results

Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1956 Summer Olympics Swimming (Aquatics) USA Sylvia Ruuska
400 metres Freestyle, Women (Olympic) 3 Bronze
4 × 100 metres Freestyle Relay, Women (Olympic) United States 2 Silver
1960 Summer Olympics Swimming (Aquatics) USA Sylvia Ruuska
4 × 100 metres Freestyle Relay, Women (Olympic) United States 1

Special Notes