Eric De Spoelberch

Biographical information

RolesCompeted in Olympic Games • Other
Full nameEric Antoine Ghislain Joseph•De Spoelberch
Used nameEric•De Spoelberch
Born15 February 1903 in Bruxelles (Brussels) (BEL)
Died17 January 1939 in Nivelles (BEL)
NOC Belgium


Eric Antoine Ghislain Joseph De Spoelberch was a Belgian viscount, pilot, and sportsman. De Spoelberch was a member of the House of Spoelberch, one of the wealthiest families in Belgium. De Spoelberch married Katharine Kelso Stewart in April 1932. Katharine’s mother, Elsie Foster Cassatt, was a well-known American golfer and socialite from Pennsylvania.

At the 1936 Garmisch-Partenkirchen Olympics De Spoelberch competed in the two-man and four-man bobsleigh. In both races he finished in eighth place. De Spoelberch was also the flag bearer for Belgium at the 1936 Olympics.

De Spoelberch began training as a student pilot in May 1924 and obtained his pilot’s license on Christmas Day of the same year. De Spoelberch became the chief test pilot for the Belgian Air Force. During the summer of 1938 he was one of two Belgian pilots who were sent on a mission to the UK to evaluate the Hawker Hurricane and the Supermarine Spitfire. In January 1939 De Spoelberch was killed in a crash while flying in the Renard R.36, a prototype fighter aircraft.


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1936 Winter Olympics Bobsleigh (Bobsleigh) BEL Eric De Spoelberch
Two, Men (Olympic) René, Baron de Lunden 8
Four, Men (Olympic) Belgium 1 8

Other participations

Games Role NOC As
1936 Winter Olympics Flagbearer at the Opening Ceremony BEL Eric De Spoelberch

Olympic family relations

Special Notes