Greg Louganis puts Olympic medals for sale for charity, his next chapter

Greg Louganis
Charlie Nye/The Star
0 Comments

Greg Louganis, arguably the greatest and most famous diver in history, put his remaining Olympic medals up for sale as part of an auction to finance the next chapter of his life and to benefit charity.

Louganis, who swept the springboard and platform titles at the Olympics in 1984 and 1988, has a memorabilia auction on his website running to Dec. 4. The medals are listed separately “for private sale” with an option to make an offer. Louganis will see how the auction and offers unfold before determining how many, if any, of his medals he will part with.

The 62-year-old said friends have reached out to ask if everything is OK. He assured them that he’s fine.

Louganis, who previously gave two of his four Olympic gold medals to people close to him, never considered selling his other medals until recently giving it a lot of thought. He was partly inspired by the Marie Kondo book, “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up.”

“We collect, we collect, we collect, and then it serves its purpose, and then we let it go,” he said. “[The sale] is an opportunity for those medals to have a life beyond.

“A lot of times we hold things so preciously that it ends up you get strangled by it. Holding things with a light touch is another practice that I’m adapting.”

Louganis previously gave his 1984 Olympic platform gold medal to his coach, Ron O’Brien.

He gave his 1988 Olympic springboard gold medal, which he won after hitting his head on the board on a preliminary dive, to Jeanne White-Ginder. She is the mother of Ryan White, who became a national figure in the 1980s after developing AIDS from a blood transfusion to treat hemophilia. White successfully fought to attend public school after a middle school banned him. White died in 1990 at age 18. That medal has been on display as part of the Ryan White collection at the Indianapolis Children’s Museum.

Louganis revealed in the mid-1990s that he had been HIV positive at the time of the 1988 Seoul Games. He said White, whom he had met in 1986, was his inspiration to get through that springboard event after hitting his head and getting stitched up after bleeding into the pool.

Louganis’ medals for sale: his 1976 Olympic platform silver medal, won at age 16 in a duel with Italian legend Klaus Dibiasi. And his first and last Olympic gold medals from the springboard in 1984 and the platform in 1988.

Louganis said at least 10 percent of the proceeds from his auction and potential medal sales will go to non-profits — the Damien Center, the largest AIDS care provider in Indiana, and Children’s Rights, which works to protect children and keep families together. The auction date range includes World AIDS Day on Dec. 1.

“Greg personally owning his HIV status has provided a beacon of hope to those living with it, proving that an HIV diagnosis does not mean that your life is over,” Damien Center President and CEO Alan Witchey said. “His work on HIV awareness and LGBTQ+ issues has empowered a generation to end the HIV epidemic.”

The money will also help him launch the GEL Dogjo, a health-and-wellness center for humans and dogs, and the Frances Louganis Foundation, named after his adoptive mom, which will support Olympians transitioning to life after the Games and a variety of causes including LGBTQ+, foster care and adoption, mental health and brain injuries and concussions.

Louganis plans to hand deliver any medal that he sells and offer to share stories over a meal.

People who have visited Louganis’ California house often ask if they can see his medals. His typical response has been, “If I can find them.” Usually they are packed in a bag, a drawer or in his garage.

“The medals, it’s in the history books,” he said. “They don’t define me. That’s just a part of who I am, but it’s not all of who I am.”

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

2022 Grand Prix Final figure skating TV, live stream schedule

Ilia Malinin
Getty
0 Comments

The Grand Prix Final, the most exclusive figure skating competition of the season and a preview of March’s world championships, airs live on Peacock and E! this week.

The top six per discipline from the six-event fall Grand Prix Series gather in Turin, Italy, at the Palavela, the 2006 Olympic venue. It’s the first Grand Prix Final in three years after the 2020 and 2021 events were canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The U.S. qualified skaters in all four disciplines for the first time since 2007, led by the world’s top-ranked man. Ilia Malinin, who turned 18 last Friday, has been the story of the season, becoming the first skater to land a quadruple Axel in competition.

Malinin, the reigning world junior champion, won both of his Grand Prix starts and posted the best total score among all fall events, edging world champion Shoma Uno of Japan. Malinin and Uno will go head-to-head for the first time this season at the Final.

Isabeau Levito, a 15-year-old world junior champion, is the youngest American at a Final since Caroline Zhang in 2007. She qualified in fifth place. The favorites are Japan’s Mai Mihara and Kaori Sakamoto and Belgian Loena Hendrickx.

The U.S. also qualified two pairs’ teams — world champions Alexa Knierim and Brandon Frazier and Emily Chan and Spencer Howe — and two ice dance couples — three-time world medalists Madison Chock and Evan Bates and Kaitlin Hawayek and Jean-Luc Baker.

For the first time, the Final has no Russian skaters. They are banned from international competition due to the war in Ukraine. For the first time in 25 years, there are no Chinese skaters. China’s top pairs’ teams did not compete in the fall Grand Prix Series.

Grand Prix Final Broadcast Schedule
All TV coverage also streams on NBCSports.com/live and the NBC Sports app for subscribers.

Day Event Time (ET) Platform
Thursday Pairs’ Short Program 1:20-2:15 p.m. Peacock
Men’s Short Program 2:35-3:20 p.m. Peacock
Friday Pairs’ Free Skate 11:35 a.m.-12:40 p.m. Peacock
Rhythm Dance 1:50-2:45 p.m. Peacock
Women’s Short Program 3:05-3:50 p.m. Peacock
Saturday Men’s Short Program* 6:30-7:30 a.m. E!
Men’s Free Skate 7:30-8:30 a.m. E!, Peacock
Women’s Short Program* 8:30-9:30 a.m. E!
Free Dance 1:40-2:40 p.m. Peacock
Women’s Free Skate 3-3:55 p.m. Peacock
Sunday Highlights* 4-6 p.m. NBC

*Delayed broadcast.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

Aleksander Aamodt Kilde sweeps Beaver Creek World Cup races

0 Comments

Norway’s Aleksander Aamodt Kilde held off Swiss Marco Odermatt for a second consecutive day to sweep World Cup races in Beaver Creek, Colorado, this weekend.

Kilde won Sunday’s super-G by two tenths of a second over Odermatt, one day after edging Odermatt by six hundredths. France’s Alexis Pinturault took third as the podium was made up of the last three men to win the World Cup overall title, the biggest annual prize in ski racing.

This season’s overall figures to be a two-man battle between Kilde, the 2019-20 champion, and Odermatt, the reigning champion, and could come down to March’s World Cup Finals. They’ve combined to win the first five of 38 scheduled races.

The top American Sunday was River Radamus, who finished an impressive 16th given his start number was 57. Radamus’ best event is the giant slalom.

Ryan Cochran-Siegle, the Olympic super-G silver medalist, and Travis Ganong, who was third in Beaver Creek last year, both skied out.

The men’s World Cup heads next weekend to Val d’Isere, France, for a giant slalom and slalom.

ALPINE SKIING: Results | Broadcast Schedule

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!