Tsuyoshi Yamanaka, Japanese swimmer, Died at 78


Tsuyoshi Yamanaka was born on January 18, 1939, and died on February 10, 2017.

He was a Japanese freestyle swimmer.

Yamanaka competed in the 400 m, 1500 m and 4×200 m events at the 1956, 1960 and 1964 Olympics and won four silver medals; he also helped Japan win a bronze relay medal in 1964 by swimming in the heat, and placed fourth in the 4×200 m relay in 1956 and in the 1500 m in 1960.

He participated at the 1960 Olympics, Yamanaka swam the fastest leg in the 4×200 m relay, yet hist team lost to the United State. Yamanaka won the 400 m and 1500 m events at the 1958 Asian Games.

He studied in college at the University of Southern California, where he broke the 200 m world record three times within two months in 1961.

Yamanaka set two more records over 200 m earlier in 1958–59, but unfortunately for him this distance was not an Olympic event in those years.

He also set a world record over 400 m in 1959 and three world records in the 4×200 m relay in 1959 and 1963.

He graduated from Waseda University and he later headed the Itoman Swimming School in Osaka.

During 1983, Yamanaka was inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame.

During 1995, he unsuccessfully ran for the House of Councillors.

His coach used pebbles to communicate with him during the training sessions – whenever Yamanaka would relax the coach would throw a pebble in his back. After the training Yamanaka had to collect the pebbles from the pool bottom.

He died due to pneumonia.

Tsuyoshi Yamanaka passed away at 78 years old.