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Squash world mourns Bob Callahan

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Leading coach Bob Callahan
Long-term Princeton coach Bob Callahan was a driving force for squash in the USA

Former Princeton coach was a giant in American squash
By Squash Mad US Reporter

The Professional Squash Association (PSA) have today paid tribute to former Princeton Men’s squash coach, and one of the most influential figures in American squash, Bob Callahan, who tragically passed away on January 27, 2015 aged 59.

A respected squash coach, Callahan led the Princeton team for 32 years before his retirement in 2013 and led them to three national titles, ten Ivy League Championships and saw Princeton win more Skillman Awards for sportsmanship than any other college in the US.

He also founded and ran the world’s oldest squash summer camp and in 1998 directed the World Junior Men’s Championship – the first time a world championship had been played in the US. He leaves his wife, Kristen and five sons, all of whom played squash under him at Princeton.

PSA Chief Executive Alex Gough said: “We were devastated to hear the news about Bob and our thoughts and condolences are with his family and all his colleagues at US Squash and the collegiate game at this very tough time.

“Bob was one of the most affable and likeable characters involved within the squash community but also a man who was held in the highest regard by all those who knew him and someone who inspired other. He will be sorely missed.”

US Squash posted the following tribute:

Robert W. Callahan, the former Princeton men’s squash coach, died on January 27, 2015 at the age of 59 due to complications from brain cancer.

A legendary figure in the game, Bob Callahan led the Tigers for thirty-two seasons before retiring in 2013. He compiled a 324-84 record. His teams won three national titles (in 1982, 1993 and, breaking Trinity’s famous 13-year streak, in 2012) and 10 Ivy League championships.

Five of his players became the national intercollegiate individual champion, including Yasser El Halaby, the only man to ever win four titles and Todd Harrity who is now ranked 68 in the world. Under Callahan, Princeton won more Skillman Awards for sportsmanship than any other college in the nation.

155 sqmag cover june 2013 16.6Callahan founded and ran the world’s oldest squash summer camp and in 1998 directed the World Junior Men’s, the first time a world championship had been played in the U.S. A graduate of Episcopal Academy and Princeton, Callahan worked at IBM for four years before returning to coach at his alma mater.

Callahan was inducted into the U.S. Squash Hall of Fame in the Class of 2011. He leaves his wife, Kristen and five sons, all of whom played squash under him at Princeton.

 

Editor’s Note: More tributes to follow

 

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