85: Mavis Hutchison – The Galloping Granny

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Manage episode 299720531 series 2396657
Player FM과 저희 커뮤니티의 Davy Crockett 콘텐츠는 모두 원 저작자에게 속하며 Player FM이 아닌 작가가 저작권을 갖습니다. 오디오는 해당 서버에서 직접 스트리밍 됩니다. 구독 버튼을 눌러 Player FM에서 업데이트 현황을 확인하세요. 혹은 다른 팟캐스트 앱에서 URL을 불러오세요.
By Davy Crockett You can read, listen, or watch Mavis Hutchison was a pioneer ultrarunner from South Africa who blazed the trail for women runners worldwide. She finished Comrades Marathon (55 miles) eight times in years when very few women ran. She had an impressive ultrarunning career that took her to many countries, and she went on to become one of the most popular women in South Africa. Childhood Mavis Vaugn and her identical twin sister, Doreen, were born on November 24, 1924, in Kimberley, South Africa to George Phillipus Vaughan (1895-1969) and Catharina “Kitty” Barnard Vaughan (1900-1996). The Vaughan family had lived in South Africa for multiple generations. There hometown city of Kimberley was the capital of South Africa’s Northern Cape Province and known for its diamond mines, and "the biggest manmade hole on earth." Mavis’ father. George was one of the top middle-distance runners in South Africa and a rugby player. He worked for a diamond mining company. Sadly, both twin girls had defects in their legs. Doreen had a damaged hip causing her to limp through life and Mavis had a leg that was somewhat “slow”. After contracting rhematic fever as a child, Mavis suffered from nervous breakdowns during her teens requiring hospitalization and was unable to walk or talk for a time. She had to relearn those skills and those breakdowns left her feeling fragile. While a teenager, Mavis really wanted to be a good athlete. Her father had been training girls at her school, so she joined in. She said, "I started out full of enthusiasm. I seemed to be getting nowhere fast. I told myself that if I did not have instant success I would never get there. I found excuses to give up. I believe my dad was disappointed, but he never forced me. I restarted a few times but ended the same each time a failure." Mavis and her mother in 1980 Because of her poor health, her schooling suffered, and she never graduated from high school. World War II arrived, and she worked at the government mint in her hometown making tools for the manufacture of weapons. She wanted to join the Army, but her father would not give consent. He gave her good advice and always emphasized that she needed to be nice to others but should also stand up for herself. He wanted her to work hard but take time to smell the roses. Of her mother, she said, “My mom was a very private person, but some things did rub off and what rubbed off on me most was about going the extra mile, working hard, being not just a starter but a finisher, and being there for one another.” Troubled Marriage Mavis sought for more independence and when she was twenty-two, she married a man who turned out to be a heavy drinker bringing misery and abuse into her life. In 1947 she gave birth to twin boys prematurely and one only lived a day. The other son, Jess, was severely disfigured and underwent many operations. At the age of twenty-four she was worn out mentally and physically, feeling like an old woman. Her husband deserted her by the time she gave birth to another son, Alan, in 1949. She divorced in 1951 and started a new life with her two little boys. After working as a saleslady in Kimberley, she moved to Johannesburg working first for an art dealer and later for record companies. Her family nanny for the past 25 years came along with her and helped raise the boys. New Life Mavis and Ernie in 1955 A few years after moving to Johannesburg, Mavis met and married Ernest “Ernie” John Hutchison (1916-1991) who was a miner. He was a quiet man, but a great stabilizing influence on her and always supportive. After a short courtship they married in 1955. Ernie had two children of his own and adopted Mavis’ sons. Two more daughters arrived, making up a “yours, mine and ours” family of six children. In 1960, Hutchison’s boys, Jess and Allan got involved in the latest new fad, racewalking. She and Ernie watched them train and compete.

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