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Rowing Official Gets Olympic Award

September 9, 2000

TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) _ John T. Garnjost, a well-known international rowing official, became the first American to receive the Olympic Order from the International Olympic Committee for service to a sport in a foreign country.

Garnjost, 64, is generally recognized as the father of Taiwanese rowing and was presented with the Olympic order Thursday by C.K. Wu, Taiwan’s member of the IOC.

Garnjost, an import-export broker, first came to Taiwan in 1958 while serving in the U.S. Air Force and subsequently returned for several years in the 1970s while on assignment for an employer, actively working on site development and personnel training for rowing in Taiwan, which has since risen to Olympic levels.

Garnjost served as the Chinese Taipei delegate to the International Rowing Federation Congress in 1983, that approved Taiwan’s first application for membership in the international organization.

``The father’s role in the birth of a baby is limited,″ Garnjost said after accepting the award. ``In rowing, as in life, there has been countless effort and teamwork in the development in this sport in Taiwan. Today, we have an internationally proven rowing course, two registered umpires and rowers throughout the country.″

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