Dietmar Lorenz 1950-2021

Dietmar Lorenz
Olympic gold medalist judoka Dietmar Lorenz passed away Wednesday at the age of 70. Born in Schleiz, in what was then East Germany, Lorenz started judo training in Berlin at the age of 16. He went on to compete internationally for the German Democratic Republic winning individual titles at the European Judo Championships three times.

In 1978 Lorenz became the only non-Japanese to capture a gold medal at the inaugural Jigoro Kano Cup competition in Japan (now called the Grand Slam Tokyo). His greatest triumph, however, came at the 1980 Moscow Olympics. With many nations, including Japan, boycotting the games due to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, Lorenz claimed the bronze in the 95 kg division, then went on to capture gold in the open weight category. With the open weight division eliminated following the 1984 games, the feat of capturing two individual medals at the same Olympic Games will likely never be repeated.

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