Photo by Mark Goodson

Track paved way

Gary Kafer of Gatesville was the first athlete in the history of the Southwest Conference to clear 7-foot in the high jump. He is one of three athletes to join the Gatesville High School Athletic Hall of Fame this year.

Kafer leaps into Hall of Fame

Gatesville athlete was first high jumper to go seven feet in Southwest Conference

Gary Kafer was a natural at jumping and competing.

He came along at the time when high jumpers did the roll. He said he toyed with the Fosbury flop, the method that came popular and revolutionized high jumping to how jumpers approach the bar today.

“Back when I jumped it was split,’’ Kafer said. “About 60 percent did the roll and 40 the flop. I stuck with the roll.’’

Kafer was an athlete that was graceful and had the right build to be a jumper.

He was 6-foot-2 ½ and weighed 170 pounds in college when he became the first Southwest Conference athlete to clear 7-foot in the high jump.



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