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Duke Llewellyn, 93

By Eric Richardson
Published: Sunday, June 06, 2010, at 03:33PM
Duke llewellyn and John Wooden Los Angeles Athletic Club

Duke Llewellyn and John Wooden

Richard “Duke” Llewellyn, chairman and founder of the Los Angeles Athletic Club's Wooden Award, passed away on Friday morning at Good Samaritan Hospital at the age of 93.

Llewellyn began his career at the Athletic Club in 1956, becoming the director of athletics. He founded the Wooden Award, given annually to the top men's and women's college basketball players, twenty years later.

“We are devastated to lose Duke,” said Los Angeles Athletic Club President Steve Hathaway in a Friday release. “Quite simply, he was the Wooden Award, and symbolized everything that is right about college athletics and amateur sports. He led an incredible life having touched so many people along the way. We will miss him deeply.”

Llewellyn passed away hours before the death of John Wooden, the legendary UCLA basketball coach for whom the award was named. The two were longtime friends.

The sports-themed restaurant at the Athletic Club is named "Duke's" in Llewellyn's honor.

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