In Memoriam – Ken Marshall

The Senior Games Movement has lost one of its founding pioneers:

Ken Marshall, who organized the first National Senior Olympics in 1987 with Harris Frank. Ken passed away on September 16 in St. Louis. Here is a link to the obituary notice:

The team of Marshall and Frank was essential to engage St. Louis for support, and to work with all of the independent Senior Games around the country to spread the word and get their athletes to the inaugural Games. Harris Frank summarized their relationship this way: "I was Tom Sawyer, but Ken PAINTED THE FENCE!!"

For those who want to know more about his contributions, our 30th Anniversary documentary video contains history and features interview bits with Ken. He and Harris have some fun opening the video. Link:

NSGA will tribute Ken Marshall in our October newsletter. We pledged to pass along any tributes to the family. If you have a personal tribute of knowing Ken or appreciating what he contributed to the Movement, please reply to this email. We will collect all comments and send in a single document. We will also select a few to share in the newsletter.


In 1985, an effort was launched in St. Louis to create a national competition event, led by Harris Frank and Ken Marshall. Seven men and women formed the original leadership for what was initially known as the National Senior Olympics Organization (NSOO). In the fall of 1985, they hosted a meeting of individuals who were currently conducting games for seniors in their states. That group planned the first National Senior Olympic Games, held in 1987 in St. Louis.

Read more:

A Brief History of the NSGA

Located on the NSGA website: