Theo Bock was renowned in his day as Germany’s first river explorer, an accomplished racer, and the organizer of the first German National Championships. Born in 1910, Theo pursued his love of rivers by being the first to experience them with his buddy Kurt Siegritz during the 1930’s. Their first descents included the Stillach in 1935; Jachenklamm in 1936; Fritzbach, Inn, Tocca, Adda, Salzachöfen, and Dora Baltea in 1938 and Rosanna in 1939.
In 1953 at the age of 43 he traveled to Colorado for the FIBArk downriver race and finished second, after stopping to help Roger Paris when he saw that his boat had filled with water. An article in Time magazine chronicled the exciting, high water race in which a record five craft completed the course quoting Theo as having commented, “For a man of my age, this race is enough.” Though he stopped paddling whitewater actively he moved into a new phase of his whitewater life. He organized Germany’s first whitewater races such as the first German National Championships, the Ammer Race and others.