Providence - George Anthony Terry, 84, passed away peacefully on Sunday, Sept. 29, 2013, at Elmurst Extended Care in Providence.|
He was born July 10, 1929, in New London, the firstborn son of Eleazar and Frances (Smith) Terry.
He is survived by his two sisters, Virginia Griswold of Killingly, and Mary Kumpf of Montville; and by many nieces and nephews, principally Ann Terry Jacquez of Providence, with whom he resided in his later years.
He was predeceased by his three brothers, Francis, David, and William Terry.
George was married twice, first to Ellen Kelley Knowles of Quaker Hill, and then to Wilma "Billie". He had no children.
George was an outstanding distance runner. He was both the IC4A and NCAA cross-country and two mile champion, earning him All-American status in the 1950s. In the Boston Marathon, his best finish was 6th in 1961 (2:30:20). His high school 4x1 mile team (with teammates Johnny Kelley and his brother Fran) set a new American schoolboy record in 1947. But the work that gave him the most satisfaction was developing young runners. His most renowned protege was Julia Chase-Brand of Groton. In 1961, they successfully challenged the AAU ban on women's distance running and remained friends for life. George entered the Peace Corps and trained the Senegalese Team for the 1964 Olympics and later coached at Brown University and local high schools.
George served his country in the U.S. Army and worked for General Dynamics/Electric Boat.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held for George at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 2, at St. Pius V Catholic Church, 240 Eaton St., Providence.
Published in The Day on Oct. 1, 2013