Seeking past U S Olympic team and World Team members to reunite at USA Wrestling events

By UL | March 02, 2006, 10:16 a.m. (ET)
USA Wrestling has decided to make communicating and bringing together our great champions a priority this year and in the future. The organization is working to collect as many addresses, phone numbers and e-mails of past U.S. World and Olympic Team members in all three styles.

The organization will send them special invitations to attend the major events and be recognized for their achievements. The concept is to re-unite our wrestling heroes, and include them in the major events as much as possible.

This year, USA Wrestling is inviting all past World and Olympic Team members to attend two important events, the U.S. Nationals in Las Vegas, Nev., April 12-15 and the U.S. World Team Trials in Sioux City, Iowa, May 26-28.

Each honored guest will receive complimentary tickets to attend the event, and can get additional tickets at a reduced rate. They will all be included in the traditional Parade of Champions during the final session. At the World Team Trials, a special Reunion Social will be hosted to provide these wrestling greats with a chance to meet with their friends, fellow competitors and coaches from throughout U.S. wrestling history.

Anybody who is a past Olympic or World Team member who has not received an invitation can contact USA Wrestling Executive Director Rich Bender directly, either via phone at the national office at 719-598-8181 or by e-mail at

Bender has made it one of his priorities to collect the contact information of these legends, and make sure each person is informed about what is going on in wrestling and invited to be part of the major USA Wrestling activities.

For the past athletes, this is a great opportunity to spend time with the people who were a part of their lives during their wrestling years. Old friendships can be ignited, and new friends within wrestling can be made. Those who have come to past USA Wrestling events often are very grateful for the opportunity to be involved once again.

Having these great legends at wrestling events today does so much for everybody else in the sport, also. The current Olympic-caliber wrestlers will receive support from the heroes of the past, which will help to inspire them to greatness. There are so many valuable things that our past champions can share with the current group of athletes, developing a bridge from the past to the present, and helping build a stronger U.S. wrestling program in the future.

Spread the word. USA Wrestling is working to reunite the U.S. World and Olympic team athletes from the past. If you are one of these heroes, please let us know how we can communicate with you. If you know somebody who is from this select group of past stars, please let them know that they are being invited back into the sport by USA Wrestling.