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Published: Monday, 7/7/2008

Champion rower, 79, dies during training session near downtown Toledo

BLADE STAFF
Bentley
<br>
<img src=http://www.toledoblade.com/assets/gif/weblink_icon.gif> <b><font color=red>VIEW</b></font color=red>: <a href=" http://www.toledorowing.org/" target="_blank  "><b>Toledo Rowing Club</b></a> 
Bentley <br> <img src=http://www.toledoblade.com/assets/gif/weblink_icon.gif> <b><font color=red>VIEW</b></font color=red>: <a href=" http://www.toledorowing.org/" target="_blank "><b>Toledo Rowing Club</b></a>
FRASER / BLADE Enlarge

A 79-year-old champion rower and a member of the Bentley family that owned a leading Toledo engineering and contracting firm died Monday morning while training for this year s world crew championships.

Toledo police said they are investigating the accident, and suspect that Anderton L. Bentley, Jr., died sometime between 6:45 a.m. and 7:45 a.m., and may not know the cause of death until the results of autopsy on Tuesday at the Lucas County Coroner s Office. Police ruled out foul play.

A passerby saw Mr. Bentley in the Maumee River about 8 a.m., near the boat launch on the International Park side of the Martin Luther King Bridge, Mr. Bentley s body was found floating near his capsized one-seater crew boat, and was soon retrieved by Toledo firefighters.

He was the great-grandson of Anderton Bentley, who immigrated from Yorkshire, England, and in 1887 founded what became A. Bentley & Sons Co., which constructed such well known Toledo buildings as the Spitzer Building in downtown Toledo.

Mr. Bentley started working at the family firm as a surveyor in 1954.

In 1982, when the company liquidated, he was its executive vice president and chief engineer.

He went on to have a long career as a business consultant while renewing his love of rowing, in which he had competed on the international scene as a young man.

Mr. Bentley in recent years competed in numerous senior-age crew races, both individual and with teammates in the boat, and often returned home with gold, silver, and bronze medals for his age division.

Last year, he won three gold medals at the U.S. National Masters Championship Rowing Regatta in Oak Ridge, Tenn., and went on to win another gold at the World Masters Championship Regatta in Zagreb, Croatia.



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