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Live Like Klaus

He always wanted you to reach your potential. He did not care if you were a slower swimmer or the biggest kid on the block or the fastest swimmer.

He inspired and he cared. He was a role model and an educator. He coached high schoolers and triathletes. And he was Olympian in the very best meaning of the word.

Klaus Barth was a German Olympic swimmer, coach and Ironman triathlete. After moving to California from Germany, he motivated thousands of student-athletes to push themselves like they never thought possible. Through humor and example, he literally showed them how it is done.

At the age of 37 while coaching and teaching at Long Beach Wilson High School in California, the personable coach placed fourth in the 1986 Ironman World Championships in Kona, Hawaii with a time of 9:03, behind three famed triathlon pros: Dave Scott, Mark Allen, and Scott Tinley.

From the day he hit the beaches of Southern California to the last days of his coaching career, he was a profound inspiration to the students, swimmers and multi-sport athletes he taught.

After his untimely death due to brain cancer, his life and legacy continue to be celebrated through a variety of events including water polo tournaments, biathlons and Klaustoberfest in Long Beach, California. Additionally, the Klaus Barth Foundation was formed to provide funds for cancer research; education and assistance programs; assistance to those with physical disabilities to pursue an active lifestyle through physical fitness and competitive athletics; and promote educational opportunities for children and young adults.

His legacy continues.

Copyright © 2013 by Open Water Swimming

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