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Ron L Crawford


1939 - 2015 Obituary Condolences
Ron L Crawford Obituary
Ron Crawford, a Manhattan Beach resident of 53 years, passed away peacefully on December 20, 2015 surrounded by his family. He was an incredible husband, father, grandfather, coach, educator, neighbor and friend to so many.
Ron was born December 6, 1939 in Brea, California. He was raised in Downey by his parents George and Alice Crawford. At an early age Ron had a profound passion for swimming and water polo. He attended Long Beach City College and graduated from Long Beach State where his teams won college championships and he earned All-American honors for water polo in 1962 and 1963. He was a three-time Olympian as a proud member of the 1960, 1964 and 1968 USA Men's Water Polo Team as well as a member of the USA Pan American teams in 1963 and 1967 and was considered the #1 player in the nation during the 1960's. Ron won two medals with the USA team in the Pan American Games (Silver in 1963 and Gold in 1967) and a silver medal as the USA coach at the Maccabiah Games. He was later inducted into the USA Water Polo Hall of Fame in 1977 and the first American inducted into the International Hall of Fame in 1983.
Ron's love of the water was not solely in a pool as he loved the beach and became a Los Angeles County Re-Current Lifeguard in 1962 and proudly served for over 40 years. During his years as a lifeguard, Ron spent over 20 years as the Director of the Junior Lifeguard Program and the International Surf Festival. He also served in the U.S. Army from 1964-1965.
His passion for the game of water polo and his skillful ability to teach came together when he became a coach and teacher at Beverly Hills High School in 1966. For 35 years he coached water polo and swimming and was an inspiration and mentor to many young athletes.
Ron is survived by his loving wife Lynn; son Matt (Stacie); daughter Kelli Grant (Doug); step-children: Catherine Weaver-Lee (Terry), Caryn Orrell (Jeffery), Terry Weaver (Shawna); sister Judy Thompson; niece Heidi White (Steve); his seven grandchildren: Kyle, Chelsea, Savannah, Karlie, Kelsie, Courtney and Allison; and his two grandnieces Skylar and Taylor.
Memorial services will begin at the water front at 4th Street in Manhattan Beach on Sunday, January 31, 2016 at 10:00 AM for a lifeguard ceremony followed by a memorial reception at Parkview Room at the Marriott Hotel in Manhattan Beach (1400 Parkview Avenue). In the event that weather does not permit the lifeguard ceremony, the memorial reception at the Marriott will still be held from 11:30 AM to 2:30 PM.
Donations can be made in Ron's honor to the California State University, Long Beach Water Polo program and/or the Los Angeles County Junior Lifeguard Fund for Disadvantaged Children.
Published in The Beach Reporter on Jan. 14, 2016
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