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Houston McTear

By request: “When I was in High School there was, very briefly, a young man named Houston Mctear who was called the fastest man in the world.
To my knowledge he was the only person to ever run the 100 yard dash in 9 seconds flat. Houston came along about 2-3 years before amateur athletes could do endorsements, so he made no money despite his fame.

Years later I heard he was a homeless crack addict somewhere in New York. I’d really love to hear his story. If ever a man came just ‘that close’ Houston did. “

Where are they now?

This one was tough to track down. Houston seemingly did fall off the edge of the earth.
He became homeless, but there were conflicting reports as to where. The reader heard that it was New York, a recent Psychology Today article makes a passing mention of him being on the streets of Sweden (of all places).

It turns out it was Santa Monica. The SI King: Scott Smith tracked him down there in 1985 and had him autograph his copy of Sports Illustrated.

McTear attempted a comeback in 1989 after a “three year cocaine addiction”.

He was also rumoured to have been involved with former San Francisco 49er’s tight end Russ Francis’ mother, who was about 20 years his senior and also living on hard times.

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