Advertisement. Additionally, Rafer now acts as the athletic advisor to Dan Guerrero, Director of Athletics at UCLA. [1] His son Joshua Johnson followed his father into track and field and had a podium finish in the javelin throw at the USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships. [16], The Best That I Can Be: an Autobiography, Rafer Johnson, New York, NY, U.S.: Doubleday, 1998, page 24, "I’m sure that in 1946 no one thought twice when they heard that another family named Johnson had moved into town; it was the most common name in Kingsburg.”, Last edited on 10 September 2020, at 17:42, USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships, The Foundation for Global Sports Development, "Ch. Rafer Johnson has been in a relationship with Gloria Steinem. "[4] Dodson and Johnson drove back a month later to watch Mathias's victory parade. After his Olympic win, Johnson retired from athletics. [5]. He ran varsity track from 1956-58 and led the Bruins to their first-ever NCAA track and field championship in 1956 under head coach Elvin ‘Ducky’ Drake. Help keep Rafer Johnson profile up to date. Johnson worked full-time as a sportscaster in the early 1970s. Jump to navigation Jump to search. Johnson, a two-time Olympic medalist who captured gold in the decathlon at the 1960 Olympic Games in Rome, began his UCLA track and field career in 1955 as the captain of the freshman team. Johnson worked for Robert F. Kennedy in his 1968 presidential campaign, and he was there when Kennedy was assassinated. UCLA Athletics today announced plans to honor track and field legend and humanitarian Rafer Johnson, along with his wife, Betsy, by naming the track at Drake Stadium after the couple. Finally, after nine events, Johnson led Yang by a small margin, but Yang was known to be better in the final event, the 1500 m. According to The Telegraph (UK), "legend has it" that Drake gave coaching to both men, with him advising Johnson to stay close to Yang and be ready for "a hellish sprint" at the end, and advising Yang to put as much distance between himself and Johnson before the final sprint as possible.[6][7]. [4] The role eventually went to another UCLA great, Woody Strode. “Their selfless efforts to inspire others and encourage opportunity for all perfectly embody UCLA’s mission. Following his athletic career, Johnson was an actor, sportscaster, helped found Special Olympics Southern California and lit the torch for the 1984 Summer Olympics. August 18, UCLA Track to Be Named for Rafer Johnson and Wife Betsy The track at UCLA's Drake Stadium will be formally unveiled Friday as the Betsy and Rafer Johnson Track in …