Read, Frank Harold


READ, Frank Harold, rowing coach (b 1 Mar 1911, Vancouver; d 22 Jan 1994). Raised in VANCOUVER and on VANCOUVER ISLAND, he played FOOTBALL and rowed as a youth before turning to coaching with the UBC ROWING team in 1949. He became Canada's greatest rowing coach, leading his 8-oared with cox UBC team to a gold medal at the 1954 British Empire Games (see BRITISH EMPIRE AND COMMONWEALTH GAMES) in Vancouver and an upset win over the powerful Russian team at the Henley Regatta in England in 1955. At the 1956 Melbourne Olympics his 4-man team won the gold medal while his UBC 8s brought home the silver. He ended his coaching career soon after his 8s won another silver at the 1960 Rome Olympics, but he remained active in the VANCOUVER ROWING CLUB for many years. A self-made millionaire and owner of 3 hotels, he was among the first inductees to the BC SPORTS HALL OF FAME in 1966 and belongs to the UBC Sports Hall of Fame.
by Silas White