Newport RI 21 Oct b09 Bud Collinsb lecture on Richard Williams

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Feb 1, 2002
For anyone that may live near the Newport, RI area, Wed. Oct 21st.

International Tennis Hall of Fame & Museum welcomes

Hall of Famer Bud Collins to present,
“The Miracle Man of Tennis, Dick Williams…Titanic Survivor”

NEWPORT, R.I., October 6, 2009- The International Tennis Hall of Fame & Museum is pleased to welcome 1994 Hall of Famer and famed tennis commentator Bud Collins to deliver a special lecture about his fellow Hall of Famer and a Titanic survivor, Dick Williams. Remarkably, after his harrowing experience on the ship, Williams, who was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1957, went on to win two U.S. National Championships and achieve No. 1 ranking.
Collins will deliver a lecture detailing the intriguing lives of Williams and Karl Behr, another Titanic survivor and a member of the International Tennis Hall of Fame Class of 1969. The program will be held on Wednesday, October 21 at 6 p.m. Admission is complimentary for Hall of Fame members and $10 for non-members. Refreshments will be served. Reservations for the event should be emailed to [email protected] or made via phone by calling 401-849-3990.

The lecture is sure to fascinate tennis fans and history aficionados alike, as Collins’ renowned story-telling skills take the audience through Williams’ extraordinary life. Born of American parents in Geneva, Switzerland, Williams was en route to the United States to focus on tennis when the Titanic struck an iceberg and sank. At the insistence of his father, who went down with the ship, Williams dived from the deck at the last possible moment, swam to a half-submerged lifeboat and clung there, in near-freezing water, for six hours. When rescued, a ship’s doctor advised amputation of his frozen-stiff, seemingly useless legs. Fortunately, Williams refused, and miraculously, only months later he was in the quarterfinals of the 1912 U.S. National Championships, eventually losing in four sets.

Two years later, Williams met Behr in the quarterfinals of the 1914 U.S. National Championships, which were then held at the Newport Casino, now the site of the International Tennis Hall of Fame & Museum. The athletes were greeted by a capacity crowd of nearly 4,000, and Williams won the match 6-1, 6-2, 7-5. He ultimately won the tournament, his first of two U.S. singles titles.

Williams went on to achieve top-ten world ranking in seven years between 1914 and 1925, and was ranked No. 1 in the United States in 1916.

For more information, please visit or call 401-849-3990.
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