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U.S. Olympic Committee President Emeritus Kenneth Wilson awards the Josephs their belated Olympic bronze medals during a small ceremony in their home- town of Chicago in 1966.

husband to their local newspaper, Te Arizona Republic.

“Tey said they would do the article, but

they didn’t have any record about Ron winning a bronze medal,” said Krista, who has a back- ground in advertising and public relations. “We literally went down to Te Arizona Republic and brought the medal into the office. Te reporter said, ‘Oh, that’s weird.’ But that was pretty much it.”

Te Republic wrote: “Later, through a dis- qualification of the silver medalists, Ron and Vivian Joseph moved up one position and were awarded a bronze medal.” About four years later, while attending a

skating event at Te Broadmoor in Colorado Springs, Krista noticed Ron was listed in the pro- gram as placing fourth at the 1964 Olympics. “At one point, I did google it and saw [Viv-

sionalism,” the IOC minutes state. “Mr. Brund- age considered that the dignity of the Olympic Games is gravely impaired when they are reduced to the role of a steppingstone on the way to a professional career.” Ron, who at the time was finishing college

and preparing for medical school at Northwest- ern University in Chicago, learned this news from his mother, Lore Joseph. “I was in my dorm room getting up and

getting ready for class, and my mother called me,” Ron said. “She said, ‘You guys are getting an Olympic medal!’ Tat’s how I found out. I was in disbelief, in awe and shock, but my basic thought was, ‘I’ll believe it when I see it.’ I just went to class after that.” Te Josephs received their medals in a small

presentation during the U.S. Figure Skating Ex- ecutive Board meeting at the Sheraton Hotel in Chicago. Several area skating officials attended the event. Tere was virtually no media coverage. When asked if he recalled being interviewed by a reporter, Ron laughed. “No,” he said. “I distinctly remember not

being interviewed.” Wilkes and Revell, now the silver medalists,

received their Olympic medals during a presen- tation at the 1967 Canadian Championships. Te Olympic records reflected the updated

results: 1. Soviet Union. 2. Canada. 3. United States.

With medals in hand, it appeared the saga

had ended. But it hadn’t.

COLD WAR COMMUNICATIONS Te word “rehabilitated” has many mean-

ings, including “restore to normality.” But from 1987 forward, nothing about the 1964 pairs medals was normal. During the 1987 IOC Executive Board

meeting in Istanbul — 23 years after the Inns- bruck Games — the IOC deemed the West Germans “rehabilitated.” Te general thinking, according to Dick Pound, a Canadian member of the IOC executive board at the time, was that other athletes had similar contracts and the West

Germans felt they should have their medals re- turned. With no American representation at this meeting, it seemed no one in the United States knew of the “rehabilitation.” Likewise, when West German Olympic Committee President Willi Daume awarded Kilius and Baumler new duplicate silver medals seven months later on a German television show, word did not reach North America.

American and Canadian skating officials

said they were never informed about the addi- tional medals.

As for the official IOC records, they reverted

to 1. Soviet Union, 2. West Germany, 3. Canada. With no notification, the Josephs — whose

bronze medals hung in their homes — were now listed fourth.

Canadian Revell, who died in 1981, guard-

ed his silver medal so closely that he was buried with it, according to his longtime partner Wilkes. In these days before widespread public use

of the Internet, confusion ensued. Respected Olympic historians listed con-

flicting reports about the 1964 Games. David Wallechinsky, author of Te Complete Book of the Winter Olympics, did not note the “rehabil- itation” until 1992. His 2014 edition lists the Josephs in fourth place. In contrast, historian Bill Mallon’s (the U.S. Olympic Committee’s official reference guide), lists the Jo- sephs in third place. U.S. Figure Skating was alerted to the “re-

habilitation” in 2001 and promptly included an asterisk in its records to explain the unusual turn of events. But the matter was not officially resolved by

the International Olympic Committee until No- vember 2014. Between the “rehabilitation” and the resolu- tion came plenty of confusion, stilted conversa- tion and, finally, the age of the Internet.

CONFUSION, DOUBT AND ACCUSATIONS During the run-up to the 1992 Albertville

Games, Krista Joseph pitched a story about her

ian and Ron] were in fourth place,” Krista said. “On another Google search, Te Arizona Repub- lic story would come up, too,” Krista said. “Ulti- mately, I thought, ‘Well, he has the medal.’” More confusion ensued, to the point of a stranger challenging Vivian’s credibility. In 2006, Vivian was introduced as an

Olympic bronze medalist at a cocktail party in Chicago. About a week later, another guest, who had searched her skating history online, contact- ed Vivian to dispute her claim. “I wasn’t very happy,” Vivian said in a flat

tone. “I mean, how embarrassing. Te guy looked it up and said I didn’t win a bronze medal. It was one of the most bizarre things I’ve ever heard of.” Ron, meanwhile, began keeping the IOC doc-

umentation of his medal with him to prove his ac- complishment. As an orthopedic surgeon, he often was called into court as a medical expert and feared someone would question his Olympic record. Wilkes, for her part, was keenly aware of

the online discrepancy and rarely discussed her Olympic experience publicly. Anytime she was recognized for her Olympic achievement, the Canadian champion was labeled an “Olympic medalist” rather than a silver or bronze medalist.

A COACH FIGHTS ON Peter Dunfield, the Josephs’ coach, spent

years unsuccessfully lobbying the IOC, the In- ternational Skating Union and the U.S. Olympic Committee to straighten out the record. Sonya Klopfer Dunfield, his wife of 50 years, still has boxes of letters Peter wrote to the IOC and other organizations, including U.S. Figure Skating. Each time U.S. Figure Skating delved into

the issue, personnel hit a dead end. To put it sim- ply: More facts were needed. By luck or providence, the Sochi Games

were approaching, marking the 50th anniversary of the Innsbruck Games. With much media at- tention, this reporter focused on American med- al winners from those Olympics and found the pairs discrepancy. One by one, the facts came together from

across the globe. Tose close to the situation were finally forthcoming, helping set the record straight. At first, Vivian and Ron were not too keen


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