In the early 1950s, he attended San Francisco State University, where he majored in Physical Education.
While attending college, Mathis set a high jump record, which made him a strong contender for the Olympic team.
Johnny Mathis’ iconic Hollywood mansion was destroyed in a devastating fire on Monday evening.
Although the legendary singer was not injured, as he was not at home, he suffered an incredible loss of personal property — and the only house he ever owned.
At the age of 80, Mathis still regularly tours the United States.
As reported by , the Hollywood mansion was “the only house [he] ever had.” A native of Gilmer, Texas, Johnny Mathis showed an early talent for singing and playing music.
Although he started out singing with the church choir, his parents recognized and fostered his budding talent.
However, he ultimately chose to pursue a career in music instead.In his spare time, Johnny Mathis sang with a Jazz band — which routinely performed at the Black Hawk nightclub.As reported by , the club’s owner was impressed with the young man’s singing and invited a friend — who happened to be an executive with Columbia Records — to hear him sing.The executive was equally impressed with Mathis’ undeniable talent, and offered him a contact on the spot.At the age of eight, Mathis’ father bought him his first piano and taught him how to play “My Blue Heaven.” Johnny’s parents also arranged for a vocal coach, who helped Johnny develop his rich voice and soulful style.In addition to being a gifted musician, Mathis was an accomplished athlete.