Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Gregory Efthimios Louganis (born January 29, 1960) is an American diver of Samoan/Swedish descent, adopted by a Greek-American family. He won back-to-back Olympic titles in both the 3 m and 10 m events.
At age 16, Greg Louganis took part in the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montréal, where he placed second in the tower event, behind Italian Klaus Dibiasi. Two years later, with the Italian retired, Louganis won his first world title in the same event.
Louganis was a major favorite for two golds in the Moscow Olympics. But an American boycott of the games, instituted by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter, in protest of the Soviet invasion and occupation of Afghanistan, prevented him from participating.
Four years later, with the Games in Los Angeles, Louganis (who in the mean time had won two World titles in 1982) grabbed his revenge: with record scores and leads over his opponents, Louganis won both the springboard and tower event.
After winning two more World Championship titles in 1986, he repeated his 1984 feat in the 1988 Seoul Olympics, although not without trouble. In one of his jumps in the 3 m springboard event, Louganis hit the diving board with his head, but the resulting injury proved not heavy enough to stop him from winning the gold.
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