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John Bower

Biographical information

TypeCompeted in Olympic Games
SexMale
Full nameJohn Ford•Bower
Used nameJohn•Bower
Born8 November 1940 in Lewiston, Maine (USA)
Died6 June 2017 in Park City, Utah (USA)
Measurements178 cm / 83 kg
AffiliationsUS Army, (USA)
NOC United States

Biography

John Bower attended Middlebury College in Vermont, winning the 1961 NCAA cross-country championship. After graduation in 1963, Bower served in the US Army through the mid-60s, and won the US title in Nordic combined four times (1963, 1966-68). In 1968 he became the first American ever to win an event at Holmenkollen, winning the Nordic combined King’s Cup. While an active competitor he also returned to school and earned a masters’ degree in education from Springfield College in 1967, specializing in recreation and resort management.

Bower retired from major competition after the 1968 Winter Olympics and then coached at Middlebury from 1968-75, before becoming Nordic director at the US Ski Team from 1975-80. He then spent eight years as athletic director at Principia College in Illinois, before returning to the US Ski Team as Nordic director from 1988-90. He and his wife then settled in Park City, Utah where he started the Park City Winter School and became the first director of the Utah Olympic Park when it opened in 1989. His son, Ricky Bower, won the 1999 World Championship in halfpipe snowboarding. John Bower was named to the U.S. Ski Hall of Fame in 1969. He is also a member of the Maine Ski Hall of Fame, the Lewiston-Auburn Sports Hall of Fame, the Middlebury College Hall of Fame, and was an honorary member of the Alf Engen Ski Museum Foundation board.

Results

Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1964 Winter Olympics Cross Country Skiing (Skiing) USA John Bower
4 × 10 kilometres Relay, Men (Olympic) United States 13
Nordic Combined (Skiing) USA John Bower
Individual, Men (Olympic) 15
1968 Winter Olympics Cross Country Skiing (Skiing) USA John Bower
4 × 10 kilometres Relay, Men (Olympic) United States 12
Nordic Combined (Skiing) USA John Bower
Individual, Men (Olympic) 13