Sixten Jernberg, arguably the greatest cross country distance skier ever died Saturday (July 14) at age 83, of cancer.

The Swedish racer was one of the first cross country stars amassing an incredible nine Olympic medals over three Olympiads (’56 at Cortina d’Ampezzo, ’60 at Squaw Valley and ’64 at Innsbruck. He also added six World Championship medals including four gold.

He was particularly adept at the longer distances and was the Vasaloppet twice in 1955 and 1960. He was twice honored for his athletic achievements being awarded the Holmenkollen Medal in 1960 and the Svenska Dagbladet Gold Medal in 1956. In 1965, the International Olympic Committee awarded him the Mohammed Taher Trophy for his contributions to Nordic skiing. -hm

Sixten Jernberg at ’64 Olympic Games/

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Hank McKee
Senior Editor
- In memoriam: The veteran of the staff, McKee started with Ski Racing in 1980. Over the seasons, he covered virtually every aspect of the sport, from the pro tours to junior racing, freestyle and World Cup alpine competition. He wrote the first national stories for many U.S. team stars, and was still around to report on their retirements. “Longevity has its rewards,” he said, “but it’s a slow process.”
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