CHICAGO, Illinois, August 1. Bill Mulliken, who defied odds to win a gold medal at the 1960 Olympics, died recently at age 74 at his Chicago home. He suffered a heart attack, his wife, Lorna Filippini-Mulliken, told The New York Times.
Mulliken was the 1959 Pan American champion in the 200 breaststroke, but was considered a major underdog when he stepped on the blocks at the 1960 Games. Ranked 17th in the event, according to The Times, Mulliken set an Olympic record in the semifinals then beat Japan’s Yoshihiko Osaki with a time of 2:37.4.
Mulliken attended the University of Miami and won the school’s first NCAA title in 1959. He was also the school’s first Olympic champion.