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Georges Vallerey, Jr.

Full name: Georges-Urbain Vallerey, Jr.
Nickname(s): Yo-Yo
Gender: Male
Born: October 21, 1927 in Amiens, Somme, France
Died: October 4, 1954 in Casablanca, Casablanca-Settat, Morocco
Affiliations: EN Castres
Country: FRA France
Sport: Swimming

Related Olympians: Son of Georges Vallerey, Sr.; Brother of Gisèle Vallerey.

Medals: 1 Bronze (1 Total)

Biography

Georges Vallerey was born in a swimming family, as his father, [Georges Vallerey, Sr.], swam at the 1924 Paris Olympics, and his five siblings all became national caliber competitive swimmers in France. The family relocated to Morocco in 1932, where Georges, Jr. learned to swim and became famous in World War II for rescues of fallen soldiers in the Mediterranean waters. In November 1942 he swam out to a sunken French ship, tying a small dinghy to his waist, and then swam several soldiers back to safety on the shore in the dinghy. On 13 May 1943, Vallerey and his friend, Robert Guenet, who helped in the rescue, were given the Croix de Guerre with a Bronze Star.

Vallerey, Jr. began competitive swimming after the war and in 1946 swam on a world record setting 3x100 metre medley relay team. In 1947 he won French titles in the 200 breaststroke, 100 and 200 backstroke, and the 400 freestyle. After winning a bronze medal in the 100 back at the 1948 London Olympics, Vallerey continued to compete over the next year. In December 1949 he swam in a Christmas Cup meet in frigid waters, and then developed an infection, which turned into a kidney infection. This led to kidney failure, and he died only a few years later from the effects of that disease. In his memory, Les Tourelles Piscine, where the swimming events of the 1924 Olympic Games were held, was renamed Piscine Georges-Vallerey. In 2017 Vallerey, Jr. was inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame.

Results

Games Age City Sport Event Team NOC Rank Medal
1948 Summer 20 London Swimming Men's 100 metres Backstroke France FRA 3 Bronze

Men's 100 metres Backstroke

Games Age City Sport Country Phase Unit Rank T
1948 Summer 20 London Swimming France Final 3 1:07.8
1948 Summer 20 London Swimming France Semi-Finals Heat One 2 Q 1:08.3
1948 Summer 20 London Swimming France Round One Heat Six 1 Q 1:07.4
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