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Des Koch

Biographical information

Medals OG
Gold 0
Silver 0
Bronze 1
Total 1
TypeCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameDesmond Dalworth "Des"•Koch
Used nameDes•Koch
Born10 May 1932 in Lincoln County, Tennessee (USA)
Died26 January 1991 in Los Angeles, California (USA)
Measurements183 cm / 95 kg
AffiliationsUS Air Force, (USA)
NOC United States


Des Koch went to Southern Cal from Reed High School in Shelton, Washington, having been the nation’s top prep discus thrower in 1950. He won the NCAA discus in 1955 and made the 1956 Olympic team after Ron Drummond withdrew because of academic commitments. Koch proved to be an adequate substitute, placing third in Melbourne as the U.S. swept the medals. Des Koch was probably better known for his football prowess. With a 43.4 average he led the nation in punting in his junior year and as a senior averaged 43.5 yards and had a 72-yarder in the Rose Bowl. He may be the last player to have drop-kicked a field goal in major college football. After college, Koch had a brief fling at pro football, trying out with Green Bay and San Diego, but he never played in the NFL. Koch, who married Mitzi Whitefeather, a ⅞ths Native American whom he met when she had an apartment next to Parry O’Brien, became an executive with a plastics manufacturing plant.

Personal Bests: SP – 52-0 (15.85) (1954); DT – 180-8 (55.08) (1956); JT – 213-0 (64.92) (1954).


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1956 Summer Olympics Athletics USA Des Koch
Discus Throw, Men (Olympic) 3 Bronze