Newt Loken, 'father of Michigan men's gymnastics,' dies at age 92
Newt Loken, who coached the Michigan men's gymnastics team for 36 years, died of natural causes at a retirement home in Oregon on Tuesday. He was 92.
He is survived by his wife, Dorothy Ann, and four grown children. The family is planning a memorial service for Loken in Ann Arbor later this summer.
Loken coached the Wolverines from 1948 to 1983, winning two gymnastics team national titles (1963, 70) and two trampoline championships (1969, 70). His teams had a 240-71-1 (.771) record with 12 Big Ten team championships and 69 individual conference champions in that time. Michigan
The Michigan men's gymnastics training center was named and dedicated in his honor in 2003.
"I was fortunate enough to not only be mentored by him as a student-athlete but as a coach as well. There are many of his principles I still use today," current Michigan coach Kurt Golder said in a statement. "Newt will be missed by many, but he will always be remembered. He will forever be the father of Michigan men's gymnastics."
Loken, a native of Minnesota, won the NCAA all-around title in 1942 while attending the University of Minnesota.
Last year, the Michigan gymnastics program posted the following excerpt from a 1995 documentary by Royce Toni on YouTube. In it, Loken chronicles his first years with the Michigan program.