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Archive for Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Topeka’s Owen dies at 71

October 9, 2007

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Olympic Gold Medalist found dead in burning car

A man found dead in a burning car is identified as Olympic Gold Medalist Bob Owen. Enlarge video

— Edwyn "Bob" Owen, who played on the 1960 team that won the first Olympic gold medal in hockey for the United States, was found dead in a burning car. He was 71.

Investigators have not determined the cause of the fire but said part of the engine probably made accidental contact with dry grass, leading to flames that spread to the car.

Autopsy results released Monday said Owen died of smoke inhalation, thermal burns and heart disease. His car was found Friday near a Topeka park, engulfed in flames.

Owen played on the team that won the gold in Squaw Valley, Calif. He did not play pro hockey after the Olympics. He supported Topeka's minor-league hockey teams over the years.

"That was a big part of his life, and he was very interested in helping with hockey here," son Robert Owen said Monday from his father's Topeka home.

Owen grew up in St. Louis Park, Minn., and graduated from Harvard in 1958, where he played hockey. Owen later moved to Kansas to teach business and started a consulting firm before retiring.

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