Powell wins three in Senior Olympics

Bobby Powell

An Ironton man entered four areas of competition in the recent St. Louis Senior Olympics and won first place in three of them.

The competition was held at the Jewish Community Center in Creve Couer from June 24 to June 29.  Powell’s events - the softball and football throw - were held on Memorial Day.

“I started practicing about a month (before the competition),” he said, “but I had only one practice throw before they said it was time to begin.  I got up there and I thought I had five throws, so I was gradually going to work my way up to it.  Turns out, we got only two throws.”

Nevertheless, he managed to fling the softball 130 feet to win the ages 75-79 category.  Powell is 76.

“Two weeks before the competition I threw the softball 150 feet on a local field,” he said.

He also won first place in accuracy, hitting a target at two different distances.

“We threw at a target - a bit circle cut out of a piece of plywood,” he said. “You got to many points for your close-up throws, then they doubled the distance and you threw again from there.  I went three out of five in the close up and five out of five for the longer distance.

“In the accuracy event I beat them in all age categories.”

Entering the football throwing competition was a bit of an accident.

“I knew they had it,” said the athlete, “but I didn’t figure on entering the thing. “But when I got up there to the area where the softball throw was to be held, they were doing the football competition. They told me I could still sign up so I did.”

He through the football 85 feet, 7 inches to win.

“It didn’t spiral,” he laughed. I hadn’t thrown a football in probably 25 years and it just tumbled.”

He is already making plans for next year.

“It was a learning experience,” he said.  “I’ll know more about it the next time I go.  I will be ready for it.”