David Wilkie MBE 1954-2024

May 22, 2024

We are deeply saddened to learn of the death of swimming great David Wilkie MBE on 22 May, at the age of 70, following a battle with cancer.

Born in Sri Lanka, where his Scottish parents were stationed at the time, David is the only person to have held British, American, Commonwealth, European, World and Olympic swimming titles at the same time. He won 200m Breaststroke bronze for Scotland at the Edinburgh 1970 Commonwealth Games at the age of 16 and announced himself on the global stage with silver in the same event at the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich.

Two gold and a silver at the 1974 Christchurch Commonwealth Games was followed by his greatest triumph as he won Olympic gold in world record time at Monteral 1976 in the 200m Breaststroke, also taking silver in the 100m event.

Also a three time World champion and twice European champion, David was European Swimmer of the Year three times and was named British Sports Personality of the Year in 1975. He was inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame in 1982 and in 2002 was one of the inaugural inductees into the Scottish Sports Hall of Fame.

Jon Doig OBE, Chief Executive, Commonwealth Games Scotland said: “We are deeply saddened to hear of the passing of one of Scotland’s sporting greats in David Wilkie.  

“He was an inspiration to so many and his record on the international stage was outstanding.

“Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this time, and we share their pride in all he achieved.” 

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