Who is Edwin C. Moses? Meet one of Dayton’s most celebrated athletes ever

Many Daytonians are familiar with the name Edwin C. Moses from one of the city’s most-traveled streets, Edwin C. Moses Boulevard, which runs 2.5 miles along the Great Miami River in front of Welcome Stadium and UD Arena. The road was formerly known as Miami Boulevard and later included Sunrise Avenue.

In celebration of his birthday — Moses was born on Aug. 31, 1955 — we went into the archives for more information about the legendary hurdler who is one of Dayton’s most celebrated athletes ever.

Moses grew up on Kimberly Circle in West Dayton, and his mother, Gladys, was a Dayton Public Schools teacher. He graduated from Fairview High School in 1973 and went on to attend Morehouse College in Atlanta on an academic scholarship. He competed for the school track team.

Majoring in physics and engineering, he carried a 3.85 GPA and later parlayed that into a Master’s degree at Pepperdine University.

Moses was a world record-setting hurdler, winning the 400 meter hurdles gold medal in the 1976 Montreal Olympic Games and the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles.

Moses qualified for the 1980 U.S. Olympic team but did not compete due to the 1980 Summer Olympics boycott in protest against a Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.

From 1977 to 1987, Moses won 122 consecutive races, appearing in 107 consecutive finals.

Credit: Uncredited

Credit: Uncredited

During his racing career, Moses won three World Cup titles and a World Championship gold in addition to his two Olympic gold medals. He set a world record in his event four times.

Moses made one last run during the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul, where he finished third in the 400 meter hurdles, the final race of his career.

Moses was driven to push the doping out of the sport. He spoke out, encouraged out-of-competition drug testing and eventually became involved in World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA).

Credit: J. Scott Applewhite

Credit: J. Scott Applewhite

Moses graced the covers of Sports Illustrated, Newsweek and Jet. He was awarded a Congressional Gold Medal, inducted in the National Track and Field Hall of Fame, had his likeness appear on the Wheaties box.

A parade for the two-time Olympic champion was held in downtown Dayton in 1984. Moses and his wife, Myrella, rode from Courthouse Square to Memorial Hall in a convertible with a patriotic banner covering the hood.

More than 1,000 Dayton public school children walked alongside holding American flags high as Moses and his wife waved to the crowd on the streets.

Days later, Mayor Paul Leonard and Moses smiled as they held up an Edwin C. Moses Boulevard street sign for photographers during the ceremony that wrapped up the week of activities honoring the athlete.

“When they cut the ribbon for the new street, I’ll be very happy,” Moses told the Dayton Daily News. “Not everyone has a street named after them.”