Lou Pagliaro, who, in a fraction of an inch over 5 ft tall, won four national table tennischampionships in the 1940s and '50s with stunningly nimble footwork and a rocketing forehand, died last Wednesday on Staten Island. top ping pong paddle. He was 90. The death was confirmed by his daughter Lois Lupo. Back in the days when table tennis clubs stuffed second-floor spaces across Broadway at Manhattan, sportswriters labeled Pagliaro "Dynamite Louie," "Bullet Lou" and the "Giant Killer." 1 thing that he hated being called was a Ping-Pong player. " It sounds sissy," he told The New Yorker magazine in January 1942, after he'd won his second singles championship under the aegis of a national table tennis association. " Ping-pong, ping-pong -- my God, what kind of game is that?" He was called having the toughest forehand in tabletennis. On stubby, slightly bowed legs, Pagliaro, who weighed less than 120 pounds in his prime, won the national championship three years in a row: in 1940 (defeating the former champion Sol Schiff); in 1941; and at 1942. Next, after a decade out of contest because he had to earn a living, Pagliaro went back to coaching and took the title again in 1952, beating the defending champion, Dick Miles. Born in Manhattan on May 5, 1919, Louis Pagliaro was among five children of Giovanni and Domenica Pagliaro, immigrants from Italy. His dad was a baker. Apart from his daughter Lois, he's survived by two other brothers, Paulette Russo and Janis Kay; a boy, John; his sister, Josephine Carlisle; seven grandchildren; along with six great-grandchildren. Soon, he had been beating the older children who had instructed him how to play the game. In 1933, he won the city's Metro Junior Championship ping pong table. "It kept him off the road and away from the dead-end children who ended up in jail," his daughter Lois said. Through the 1930s, Pagliaro worked his way upward through the ranks of the nation's table tennisplayers. During World War II, he toured with the U.S.O., demonstrating his abilities to the troops. However there wasn't any way to create a living at the sport. Until his retirement in 1984, Pagliaro functioned at an ironworks factory in Brooklyn. "I should have been a jockey," he said in 1942, after winning his third title. " He also had remarkable agility. At one stage during the 1941 championship match where he conquered Edward Pinner, Pagliaro found himself backed up about 40 feet in the table. "Playing on the defensive in this instance, having been caught off guard at the Beginning of a fast serve of Pinner's, Pagliaro kept retreating before Pinner's overhand pushes until he was prevented from going back any further," The New Yorker said. " Subsequently Pagliaro won the stage by returning a chunk that has been just 3 inches from the floor when he struck it. https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/best-ping-pong-robots-ping-pong-sport/ "The ball soared up among the arc lights and came down on top of the internet, then dropped off on Pinner's side of the desk." PHOTO: Lou Pagliaro won four national table tennis leagues.