Renowned for his books on longevity and the possessor of a fine physique well into his 80s, Delmonteque’s age was something of a mystery with some sources recording that he celebrated his 93rd birthday last November 9. However it appears he was in fact some eight years younger. Nevertheless he lived a full and fruitful life. Of Polish descent, he was born as Mike Diaks in Detroit and took up weight training after he moved to Houston in his teens. He never competed but was used as a model in many magazine of the '40s and early '50s. He then turned his hand to photography and worked with most of the physique stars of that era, and he penned numerous articles mainly for the Weider magazines.
In the 1960s he was one of the early pioneers of personal training, tutoring among others astronaut John Glenn. He helped launch a gym chain in the '60s that he eventually sold his share in -- a move that made him independently wealthy. From the '90s through to 2004 he authored a series of books expounding how longevity could be achieved through exercise and proper nutrition. Until recent years with his silver mane, immaculate dress, lithe build and amiable manner he was a regular and popular attendee at the main bodybuilding shows.
I got to know Bob well in the 90s. A lifelong friend of Joe Weider, he was was very entertaining in regaling tales of bygone days. He talked the talk, but by maintaining an exceptional fitness lifestyle into his '80s, Bob Delmonteque surely walked the walk. Rest in Peace, old friend. You will be missed. Bob is survived by his wife of 50 years, Madeline.
-- Peter McGough, Special Features Editor