Stanley R. Pocock, a former University of Washington rower and assistant coach and the son of iconic shell builder George Pocock, has died at 91. Pocock, who held an engineering degree from UW, rowed on the varsity eight that finished third in the 1947 IRA Championships and then began a coaching career that included time spent at his alma mater, the U.S. national program and Lake Washington Rowing Club.
Pocock coached several U.S. men’s crews to gold medals in both the 1956 and 1960 Olympic Games and sustained the long family tradition of innovative boat-building, something he continued until his retirement in 1985.
“For decades Stan Pocock has been an important part of Washington rowing,” said Bob Ernst, Washington’s director of rowing and its head women’s coach. “His passing is a tremendous loss for the entire Northwest rowing community.”
Following his varsity career, Pocock joined Al Ulbrickson’s UW staff and coached the freshmen in 1948. He spent seven years as a coach at Montlake. In 1958, he helped found and became the first head coach of the Lake Washington Rowing Club.
As a boat builder, Pocock became being the first to incorporate fiberglass into shell design and, in 1961, completed the first full fiberglass shell.
Pocock was inducted into the U.S. Rowing Hall of Fame in 1979. His father, George, was inducted in 1966.