September 9

 

September 9, 1968 – Arthur Ashe Becomes The First African American To Win The US Open Tennis Championship

Arthur Ashe (cropped)

Arthur Ashe at the 1975 World Tennis Tournament in Rotterdam.

Arthur Ashe – July 10, 1943 – February 6, 1993

Legendary tennis player, Arthur Ashe became the first African American to win the US Open Tennis Championship on September 9, 1968.  Ashe set many first on the competitive courts of tennis including being the first African American to win the singles cup at Wimbledon on July 5, 1975.   He won over defending champion Jimmy Connors.  Arthur Robert Ashe, Jr. was born in Richmond, Virginia on July 10, 1943 and died on February 6, 1993 in New York City, New York at age 49.  He achieved the ranking of No. 1 in the world among his peers and had a singles career record of 818 wins, 260 losses and 51 titles which included wins in the Australian Open, Wimbledon and the US Open.   He is believed to have become HIV positive from a blood transfusion during heart surgery. He worked to educate people about AIDS after publicly disclosing his illness and died of AIDS related pneumonia. He was married to the former Jeanne Moutoussamy.