Former RAF man held prominent positions within the AAA of England and Midland Counties and he was chief judge at the 1970 Commonwealth Games
Wing Commander Daniel Cledlyn Davies OBE, a legend within British athletics for contributions made in 1950s to 1980s, died on October 19 at the age of 101 in a Reading care home.
Dan, as he was mostly known by the athletics community, graduated from talented runner to coach, mentor and administrator during his Royal Air Force career which began in wartime 1942 and continued over 34 years until retirement in 1976. A RAF technical education specialist, he combined his duties with a lasting love of athletics.
He had many achievements but may be best known for the support he gave Derek Ibbotson at RAF Yatesbury when Ibbotson did National Service during 1956-58, a period which saw him earn an Olympic 5000m bronze medal and a world mile record. Similar support to other RAF athletes led to many gaining international selection up to representation at all three major Games. An astute and perceptive coach, he wrote a much-needed coaching handbook.
Davies was also a leading British athletics official. He was the secretary of the AAA Officials Committee from 1969 to 1974, having been a member of the committee since 1960. He modernised officials’ handbooks and was a well-respected hands-on practitioner. He was the Chief Judge at the 1970 Commonwealth Games and Referee at the 1973 Europa Cup.
In addition he served the Midland Counties as Treasurer for many years and was a distinguished President. Davies also served as President of Shropshire AA.
After retirement, he regularly attended national and international events and was a popular senior Life Vice President of the RAF Athletic Association.
His funeral was at Caversham Crematorium on November 2 attended by family with athletics represented by many former colleagues and athletes.
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