Helen Irene Bernhard (July 7, 1921 – April 19, 1998) was an American tennis player.

Helen Bernhard
Full nameHelen Irene Bernhard
Country (sports) United States
Born(1921-07-07)July 7, 1921
Manhattan, New York
DiedApril 19, 1998(1998-04-19) (aged 76)
Height5 ft 5 in (165 cm)
Grand Slam singles results
US OpenSF (1942)
Grand Slam doubles results
US OpenQF (1941)

Bernhard was born in Manhattan, New York, to a Russian father and Polish mother, both war time immigrants to the United States. She attended Wadleigh High School in Harlem and was considered a significant prospect, winning back to back national junior championships in 1938 and 1939.[1]

Only active on tour in the early 1940s, Bernhard was ranked as high as fourth in the country and made the quarter-finals or better of the U.S national championships three times. She reached the quarter-finals for the first time in 1940 after saving match points in her round three win over Margaret Osborne, before falling to Alice Marble.[2] When she lost in the quarter-finals again in 1941 it was Osborne who beat her. Her best performance came in 1942, reaching the semi-finals with a win over Helen Rihbany. She lost her semi-final match in three sets to the top seed Louise Brough.[3]

Bernard, a graduate of Cornell University, married Navy officer James Whiteaker in 1945.[4] She died on April 19, 1998, aged 76.[5]

References edit

  1. ^ "N.Y.-born Helen Bernhard Brightest Net Prospect". New York Daily News. August 6, 1939.
  2. ^ "Kramer Upsets Prusoff; Schroeder Tops Grant". New York Daily News. September 6, 1940.
  3. ^ "Frankie Parker Reaches Finals". The Bellingham Herald. September 6, 1942.
  4. ^ "Gets Promotion". The Knoxville News-Sentinel. July 13, 1945.
  5. ^ "U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007". Ancestry. Retrieved January 12, 2023.