T Nation

Dan Lurie Passed Away

Dan Lurie passed away this weekend, at 90.

As a competitor in the '40s, he was runner-up in 3 Mr. Americas, but he won the “most muscular” award at each of those shows. He was partners with Joe Weider at the very start of Weider’s magazine and barbell-selling businesses. Lurie even helped promote and organize some of the first contests run under the IFBB name. After a falling out, Lurie kept selling his own barbells/weights and started Muscle Training Illustrated magazine.

He also went on to start the WBBG (World Bodybuilding Guild) and ran his own Mr. America, Mr. World, and Mr. International contests, plus a few Mr. OIympus shows as well. Back then, there was even more “politics” at play in deciding who won, or even competed, in contests, but winners of his shows included Boyer Coe, Serge Nubret, Chris Dickerson, and Sergio Oliva. He also spent several years training a young Lou Ferrigno. They were both from Brooklyn and Lurie referred to him as “like another son.”

Lurie is probably a lesser-known name today, but he was right there at the start of what bodybuilding is today, with his hands in the first popular training magazines and bodybuilding shows. So he deserves recognition.

Seemed like a really great and genuine guy. Maybe business didn’t always go his way, but he seemed happy helping people and building his family - married 65 years, five kids, 15 grandkids, and 10 great-grandkids. I’m extra-upset because apparently he lived not more than a half-hour from me and I never knew it.

Lurie at 19, 57, and 85. Inspiring.

[quote]Chris Colucci wrote:
Lurie at 19, 57, and 85. Inspiring.[/quote]

That split in his chest for a 19 year old is just nuts.

Sorry to hear. I had heard his name many times before, but just a couple years ago I actually tracked down and read his autobiography. It really does cast another level on the history and growth of our sport besides what we’ve most likely been fed through Weider’s magazines over the decades.

A great read, and certainly a great man who did what he loved, and had a lasting impact no doubt.


Wow. Bought my first set of weights, a plastic covered 110 lb set from Caldor’s, in 1967. Signed and endorsed by “Dan The Man Lurie.” Paid $13 bucks for them. Remember my Dad would only allow plastic covered as it would scratch the floors and he feared I wouldn’t use them for long. Still lift and still haved saved one plate from that set.

Guys like this guy are what training is all about.

There is so much history to this sport and yet it’s mostly forgotten about…

Interesting little video clip. It’s really a shame that so much of real history gets buried or just overshadowed in the name of making a buck. Reading Lurie’s book, Robby Robinson’s book, and even Bob Paris’s book really give some insight into Joe Weider that you’d never know if you grew up on his magazines.

I’ve done so much reading in all my years being interesting in bodybuilding; books on training, on nutrition, and even those that just recount the history, and it’s amazing how little by little pieces of a puzzle slowly come together to give a clearer picture of things.