Dixon Hemphill (1949)
Dixon Hemphill (1949)
Inducted 2019
Track & Field, Cross Country, Football

Dixon Hemphill, a member of the Class of 1949, was a standout competitor at Middlebury who became a world-class athlete at a late age. Awarded the school’s Hazeltine-Klevenow Memorial Trophy for ability in athletics and excellence in scholarship, he served as captain of the track and field team during his senior year. 

Hemphill competed in the pole vault, high jump, and discus at Middlebury, winning the 1949 College decathlon. He placed third in the pole vault at both the Milrose Games in New York City and at the Boston Garden. Hemphill set the Middlebury school record in the pole vault, clearing 12 feet with a bamboo pole.

At age 70, he ran a 3:44 marathon to qualify for the Boston Marathon. A veteran of 12 marathons, 60 triathlons, and hundreds of road races, he was a member of the men’s age 90–94 relay teams that set world records in the 4x400 and 4x800 relays at the National Masters Championship in 2015. That year, he was also ranked first in the world in the 800 and 1500 meters, mile, and 5K.

His friendly rivalry with Orville Rogers, also in his 90s, was documented on CBS Sunday Morning and ESPN segments that aired nationally in 2017 and 2018.