SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. — Thomas Kline, one of Cal Poly's two NCAA Division I wrestling national champions, passed away last week in Oceanside, Calif.
Kline celebrated his 70th birthday in January.
A 1970 Cal Poly graduate with a bachelor's degree in English, Kline captured top honors at 191 pounds in the 1969 NCAA Division I National Championship, one year after claiming second place in the same weight class.
Other achievements include four conference championships and two Division II national titles as he led Cal Poly to national team championships in both 1968 and 1969. The 1969 nationals were held in the Mott Athletics Center.
One of 13 charter inductees in the Cal Poly Athletics Hall of Fame in 1987, Kline is one of three former Mustangs to claim two NCAA Division II individual titles.
While at Cal Poly, Kline was an honor student and was recognized as the Cal Poly Alumni Association's 1980 Honored Alum. Tom was active in athletic fundraising and served as president of Supporters of Mustang Athletic Teams (SUMAT).
Kline coached high school football and wrestling, once held the world record in the bench press in his age group and was owner and president of Thomas Kline Associates, an insurance company in Carlsbad, Calif.
Publisher of several books, Kline was a board member with the Boys & Girls Club of San Diego.
Kline is survived by his wife Vilma and six children, Matt, Andrew, Kristina, Kelly, Nick, and Krystal.
The funeral/celebration of life will be held May 9 at 11 a.m. at Saint Thomas Moore Catholic Church, 1450 South Melrose Drive in Oceanside, Calif. For more information, call (760) 758-4100.