During the 1972 Olympic Games, Marshall and his wife Judi took a trip to Austria after the gymnastics competition had ended. While they were gone, Palestinian terrorists took Israeli athletes and coaches hostage, massacring 11 of them. Avener later said, “When we left, it was just a nice day. When we got back, there was an armed, helmeted soldier with an automatic weapon standing about every twenty feet surrounding the entire Olympic village.”
Olympic Games: Avener was a member of the U.S. men’s gymnastics team at both the 1972 Munich Olympics and the 1976 Montreal Games. In Munich, he helped the U.S. finish in 10th place in the team competition (533.85 points), while placing 50th in the individual all-around event (it was the second highest placing among U.S. gymnasts). At the 1976 Montreal Games, Avener finished 43rd in the individual all-around while the U.S. finish seventh in the team competition. World Championships: 1970- 7th Team, 58th AA. Other International Competitions: 1970-Penn State-Bulgaria Dual Meet: Gold- Team, Bronze- AA and PH, 4th FX, 4th V, 5th PB, 5th HB; 1971-Riga International: 15th AA; ROM-USA Dual Meet: 6th AA; USA-USSR Dual Meet: Silver- Team, Bronze-AA; 1972-USA-HUN Dual Meet: Gold-AA; 1973-USA-HUN Dual Meet: Gold- Team and AA; USA-SUI Dual Meet: 10th AA; 1974-USA-POL Dual Meet: 5th AA; 1975-Pan American Games: 5th AA, Bronze- V; 5th PH and PB, 6th SR; 1976-Moscow News: 12th AA; Riga International: 7th AA. USGF National Championships: 1972-Gold-AA, PH and PB, Silver-R; 1974-4th AA, Gold- PH; 1972-US Olympic Trials: 5th AA; 1974-US World Trials: 14th AA;1975-Pan American Games Trials: 3rd AA; 1976-US Olympic Trials: 5th AA. Junior Competitions: 1967-Jr. National AAU Championships: 4th AA; NY State High School Inter-Sectional Championships: Gold Team and AA; 1968- Silver- Team, Gold-AA, PH and PB; 1969-Gold,AA and HB. Collegiate Competitions:EIGL Championships: 1970-Gold-Team, Silver- AA-PB, Bronze-SH-V-HB; 1971-Gold-AA, Bronze-SH, Silver-V,PB,HB; NCAA Championships: 1970-Bronze-V, 1971-Bronze-AA. Mardi Gras Invitational: 1974- Gold- AA; 1975-Mardi Gras Invitational: Silver-AA; 1976-Mardi Gras Invitational: Silver-AA; Honors: 1973-Nissen Award finalists (highest honor in collegiate gymnastics). USAG Hall of Fame-2012. Post Competition: After his competitive career ended, Marshall coached the women’s gymnastics team at Penn State for a number of years before moving to Boca Raton, Florida. Family: Wife-Judi.
Sources: Data and photos obtained from the public domain (Google and Wikipedia) by 2008-2012 web manager Jerry Wright, author of Gymnastics Who’s Who-2010. Editing by Dr. Larry Banner, 1993 GHOF Inductee & 1894-2007 Web Manager, Ph.D. & Ed.D.