|Born||14 December 1903 Salford Lancs|
|Christened||07 February 1904 Salford Lancs|
|Died||16 March 1982 Glyndwr Wales|
|Buried||(Date unknown) Southern Cemetery Manchester Lancs|
|Marriage||Hilda NOEL 1929 June Quarter St Luke's Church Weaste Salford Lancs|
|Child||Colin Noel RANGELEY|
|Child||Michael Walter RANGELEY|
|Occupation (with source date)||Bank Clerk at The Westminster Bank (1920 to 1963)|
|Address (with source date)||42 Milford Street Seedley Lancashire (1911)|
|9 Barnfield Crescent Ashton on Mersey Sale Cheshire (1936)|
|Llanarmon yn Ial Mold Wales (1968? to 1982)|
"He was not only a great athlete...he was such an impressive person to look at. He had the smartest possible visual appearance. The way he ran was wonderful to watch. The angle of his body as he ran was absolutely right... Even when I saw Jesse Owens run later I still thought Walter was the finest stylist I'd ever seen on a track. Everything was right about him, as if he was running on air."
There are plenty of references to Walter on the internet: - From sports-reference.com/olympics/athletes/ra/walter-rangeley-1.html: -
"As a sprinter, Walter Rangeley enjoyed a remarkably long career. After placing third in both sprints at the unofficial National Junior Championships organized by the Manchester AC in 1921, he went on to win the Northern Counties 100y five times and the 220y eight times. In the 4x100 relay he won an Olympic silver in 1924 and bronze in 1928, when he also took a silver, only 60 cm. behind the winner, Percy Williams, in the 200. Rangeley won a gold medal in the 4x110y relay and a bronze in the 220y at the 1934 British Empire Games, but surprisingly was never an AAA winner. Although an AAA finalist 13 times – five at 100y and eight at 220y – his best placements were third at 100y (1925) and 220y (1928, 1935). He made his final appearance at the Championships in 1939 when he placed fourth in the 220y at the age of 35. He worked as a bank clerk.
Personal Bests: 100y – 9.86 (1925); 100m – 10.6 (1935); 200m – 21.9 (1928)."
The Times 29 Jul 1935: -
"Similarly, the 220 Yards was largely an All-British event. This time, however, the second string was no second string at all, but W. Rangeley, one of the most attractive runners one ever remembers seeing and very nearly as good as ever. Rangeley's race away from his field into the straight, allowing for the deceptions of the echelon, was electrifying. The Frenchmen were right out of it, and even Sweeney had yards to make up. The younger champion nearly did it, but not quite. Rangeley was flagging badly in the last few yards, but he won by a foot in 22sec. A truly grand effort and highly popular, in spite of the general admiration for Sweeney."
The Times 18 May 1937: -
"In the 220 Yards one had the usual demonstration of 'how to do it' by W. Rangeley, a runner who loves running and still has the easy grace of the true athlete and artist in one. The way in which Rangeley beat C. A. Wiard in the final was most impressive. Rangeley achieved no great time, but he presented a model run and, incidentally, won some valuable points for Lancashire."
Maurice Scarr, a Cambridge University sprinter and close friend, read the following words at his funeral: -
This afternoon we pay our last respects to, and give thanks for the life of, a much loved man who, in his time, excited the admiration and pride of his fellow countrymen, and whose modest bearing and gentle charm enriched so many lives.
But first and foremost Walter Rangeley was a family man. The centre of his life was the home which he and Hilda made together and which provided the right support and encouragement for his boys as they grew up. Fortunate, indeed, were those of his friends who were admitted to this happy family circle. He took a natural interest and pride in what his sons were doing and felt delighted and rewarded by their achievements. As they married, he welcomed the enlargement of the family group and enjoyed beyond measure the progress and successes of his grandaughters as they matured in their turn. They were a source of constant pleasure to him.
And yet his heart was large: there was ample room in it for others less fortunate than himself and for the boundless and selfless affection and consideration he extended so generously to his friends. He was a good companion with the ability to listen patiently and to contribute wisely to a discussion, often enlivened by his quiet sense of humour.
His activities were many and varied. He loved his garden which was always a credit to him and a source of enjoyment to others: he loved walking and could wax elequent about his special thrill of walking in the fells: above all he was a keen sportsman with a special talent for athletics in which he achieved great distinction. He represented his country on many occasions as a world class sprinter of outstanding quality and took part in no less than three Olympic Games - 1924, 1928 and 1936. He won altogether three Olympic medals: two silver and one bronze of which one silver medal was for the individual 200 metres in 1928.
These international honours he wore with characteristic modesty for he was always ready and willing to spend time and effort to help and encourage other athletes whatever their age or ability. His personal interest, example and inspiration spurred many a beginner and established athlete to heights of acheivement beyond their own expectations.
But he was also a calm and restful man with a passionate interest in classical music. His enthusiasm was infectious and he liked nothing better than to share his love of music with a friend: these were moments to treasure.
In later life, Walter was not a regular churchgoer but there can be no doubt that he lived in accordance with the same Christian principles as those on which the Church is founded. He lived to be of service: if he could not speak good of someone he remained silent: he always looked for and rarely failed to find the best in his fellow men: he generated a feeling of warmth, friendship and goodwill: he really cared about people.
These few words are an inadequate tribute to a dearly loved husband, father and grandfather: to a dear brother and friend: and to a sincere, kind and compassionate man who has left behind such a rich legacy of happy memories.
Whilst we mourn his passing we give heartfelt thanks for his life.
Walter will be remembered with respect, gratitude, love and affection.
After his cremation, Walter's ashes were scattered on top of Bow Fell in the Lake District, Cumbria.