ISHOF Honor Swimmer Bruce Furniss Hospitalized after Severe Heart Attack
31 March 2020, 03:01pm
Furniss remains in intensive care in his native California. His family has set up an account via Caring Bridge to offer updates on his condition and share support with loved ones.
Furniss’ family also released a statement:
“First, we want you to know how much we appreciate your support and prayers, particularly, in such an unprecedented time of crisis for so families across our country. Our hearts go out to any family who has a loved one in ICU with whom they cannot visit or even gather as a family to support. It is something difficult to fathom at a time when families need to be together to support one another.
“The outpouring of concern and prayers for Bruce, from his many friends, is testimony to how much he is loved. One positive new development is that the hospital agreed to allow Bruce’s wife, Sharon, to be with him briefly once they bring him out of a medically induced hypothermia. Sharon is an incredibly strong person and sometime today or tomorrow she will be able to hold his hand for all of us.”
At the 1976 Olympics, Furniss, 62, won gold in the 200 freestyle in a world-record 1:50.29 to lead an American podium sweep. He joined Mike Bruner, John Naber and Jim Montgomery to set a world record and win gold in the 800 free relay in Montreal. He also earned two World Championship gold medals in relays and individual silvers in the 200 and 400 free at the 1975 World Championship in Cali, Colombia.
A 1987 inductee to the International Swimming Hall of Fame, Furniss set 10 world records, including five individual marks, in the 200 free and 200 individual medley. The latter record was one he took from his older brother, Steve Furniss, in 1975.
Bruce Furniss’ storied swimming career included six NCAA Championships at the University of Southern California and two Kiphuth Awards (1975 and 1976). He won 11 AAU Championships and set 19 American records (10 individual) despite battling arthritis throughout his 12-year swimming career.