Track and field is the one sport that has been around Chillicothe at least as long as football. In the nearly 110 year history of Hornet track and field, one name stands alone at the top, and that name is Joe Shy.
Shy was the key member of the 1939 team that won championships in both the indoor and outdoor state meets.
In the 1939 Indoors meet, Shy won gold in the 60 hurdles, setting a new record of 7.3 in the prelims, then winning the finals in 7.4 seconds. He was also 2nd in the 60 yard dash and Long (aka Broad) Jump and was a member of the 2nd place Medley Relay team.
In the 1939 outdoors meet Shy had his ups and downs, despite scoring 11 of the team's first place 13 points. If he would of entered as a one man team, he would of finished 2nd in the team events, a half point behind what would of been the champion team.
Shy won the 200 yard dash, was second in the 120 high hurdles and second in the broad jump. In his 4th event, the 200 meter low hurdles, Shy clipped a hurdle and fell. He was able to finish uninjured, but didn't medal in the event.
Shy was far more than a one year wonder, earning 2nd in
the 200 low hurdles in the 1938 outdoor meet. Shy routinely set meet records in every meet his Junior year.
After high school Shy went to college at the University
of Missouri, where his name became well known in track circles
around the world. Shy was conference champion in the Indoor
60-yard hurdles (1942); Outdoor 220-yard low hurdles (1942);
Outdoor 100-yard dash (1943) and Outdoor 200-yard dash (1943).
Shy earned All-American honors in 1943 based on his performance
at the national meet in the 330-yard dash, but his crowning
achievement was his time in the low hurdles in
1942, which tied the world record for the event.
Shy was pushed into duty in the sprints when Mizzou's
top sprinter Owen Joggerst, was injured. Shy rose to the
occasion, going undefeated in the 100 and 200-yard dashes during
that outdoor season.
After graduation, Shy was a regular participant in running
events around the country for most of his adult life. In 2005,
Shy was inducted posthumously into the University of Missouri
Athletic Hall of Fame.