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             Fitness Tips For 7/21/2004          

Sad News

Joe Gold, founder of Gold's Gym Venice and 
World Gym Franchise, dies at 82

The Life of Joe Gold

Born March 10, 1922, Boyle Heights, California. 

Died July 11, 2004 at Daniel Freeman Hospital in Marina 
Del Rey, California. 

Joining the Navy during World War II Joe was injured during 
the Battle of Leyte, which took place in the Philippines in 
1944. After the war, he joined the merchant marines and 
sailed around the world. With every voyage he took a set 
of weights with him to build his physique. 

In the 1950s, Joe became a competitive bodybuilder and 
movie stuntman.

In 1954, Miss Mae West enlisted a gym full of bodybuilders,
including Joe, and took them on a tour of nightclubs in Las 
Vegas various cities across the nation. West's male revue 
created a sensation, the show and the men were a big hit 
with the all female audiences. 

In 1965, Joe opened the first Gold's Gym in Venice Beach, 
welding most of the equipment himself and designing 
unique machines that were beneficial to the serious 
competitive bodybuilder.  He called it "the first gym made 
specifically for bodybuilders."

Arnold Schwarzenegger working out at Gold's Gym in the 
1977 movie "Pumping Iron" helped make it a mecca for 

Schwarzenegger, now California's governor, issued the 
following statement. 

"Joe was a trusted friend and father figure and was 
instrumental in my training during my days as a 
bodybuilder. Gold's Gym was not only a training 
facility but it became a home to me. Joe was an 
inspiration to many and his death is felt deeply in 
the entire health and fitness community.

"In 1968 when I came to America, Gold's Gym was the 
gym where I first went to work out. Joe looked after 
me and encouraged me, and his dry sense of humor 
was a daily feature of the gym.

"Joe Gold was a bodybuilding legend, a pioneer, but 
above all, deep in his heart, he was a bodybuilding fan. 
The world will be the poorer for his loss. I will miss 
him as a dear friend of 36 years."

Joe sold Gold's Gym in 1970 and returned to the Merchant 
Marines. Under new owners, Gold's Gym became a huge 
franchise operation that has expanded its reach to 43 states
and 25 countries.

In 1977 Joe opened World Gym in Venice, later moving it to 
Marina Del Rey. Today it is also a  global franchise, famous 
throughout the world, and even toward the end of his life, 
Joe could still be found at the front desk of the Marina Del 
Rey headquarters.

Joe never married and has no descendants.

Today we say "Farewell and Thanks!", to Joe Gold a true 
legend in bodybuilding history!


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