Duke Athletics Hall of Fame Member Al Buehler Passes Away

Duke Athletics Hall of Fame Member Al Buehler Passes Away

DURHAM – Al Buehler, former head coach of the Duke track and field program and a member of the school’s Athletics Hall of Fame, passed away peacefully last Thursday at the age of 92.
Buehler is survived by his wife Delaina and their children, Elizabeth Buehler Ivy (Hunter) of Memphis, Tenn., and Albert William “Bo” Buehler (Lynn) of Wilmington, N.C., and his grandchildren Julia Katherine Buehler, Ruth Elizabeth “Ruthie” Ivy and William Hunter “Will” Ivy, Jr.
Following a stellar undergraduate track career at the University of Maryland, Buehler joined the Blue Devils in 1955 as head cross country coach. He was promoted from assistant to head coach of the track and field team in 1964, serving in this role up until his retirement in 2000 following the NCAA Track and Field Championships in Durham.
Across his 45-year tenure at Duke, which included serving as faculty chair of the department of physical education, Buehler coached 10 All-Americans, seven Penn Relay champions, six ACC championship cross country teams and five Olympians, including Bob Wheeler, Dave Sime, who won a silver medal in Rome in 1960, and Joel Shankle, who won a bronze medal in Melbourne in 1956.
Buehler rose to prominence in the 1970s as a track meet organizer and official. He was elected president of the NCAA Track and Field Coaches Association in 1970, after previously serving as vice president. That same year, he directed the first annual U.S. Olympic summer training camp at Wallace Wade Stadium.
Along with his accomplishments as a Blue Devil, Buehler also enjoyed success on the international scene. In 1972, 1984, and 1988, Buehler served as team manager for the U.S. Olympic Track and Field Teams in Munich, Los Angeles, and Seoul, respectively. At the World Indoor Track Championships in Lisbon, Portugal, Buehler served as head manager for the U.S. contingent.
Buehler also was director of the Martin Luther King Jr. Games in 1973, the U.S.S.R. Meet in 1974, the U.S.A.-Pan Africa-Federal Republic of Germany Meet in 1975 and the Lite Invitational Meet in 1981.

Buehler was inducted into the Duke Athletics Hall of Fame (2001), the North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame (1989) and the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association Hall of Fame (2003).

A memorial service for Coach Buehler will be held at Duke Memorial United…

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