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News and Notes, Volume 12, Number 6


1. Longtime USATF Official Charles Ruter dies

Charles Ruter, an iconic figure for USA Track & field after spending more than 60 years as an official in the sport, passed away Saturday evening at his home in Fern Creek, Ky., at the age of 91. He died of kidney failure.

Also spending time recruiting and training officials at all levels, Ruter’s impact on the sport was evident as he played a big part in converting the Amateur Athletic Union into USATF where he served as the vice president for 20 years and the official certification chair for 35 years.

Some of the most notable events he was a part of were the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles and the 1996 Olympics Games in Atlanta. At the 1984 Olympics, he served as a field event referee then as the official’s coordinator in 1996. Ruter also officiated NCAA Championships, Olympic trials, Goodwill Games and many different conference championships at the collegiate level.

In addition to his work on the national track scene, he was also an integral part of the Kentucky High School Athletic Association where he officiated, managed and scored a variety of sports throughout his career.

Countless hall of fame inductions showcase how successful his career actually was. He was inducted ten times, two of which were to the National Federation of High Schools Association Hall of Fame and the Kentucky USATF Officials’ Hall of Fame.

After playing such a significant role in the officiating of track and field, USATF started an annual award in his honor. In 1998, the Charles Ruter award began to recognize an outstanding running event official.

Charles Ruter’s illustrious career in track and field will forever have an impact on the sport and the people involved. 

Visitation is set to take place on Tuesday and Wednesday at Fern Creek Funeral Home in Louisville, Ky., with the funeral scheduled for Wednesday afternoon.

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