John Balfanz (deceased)
Year Inducted: 1980
Born: June 23, 1940, Minneapolis, MN,
Died: November 11, 1991. Denver, CO
John Balfanz was one of America's best ski jumpers of his era and set two North American distance records during his career. At the 1962 F.I.S. Team tryouts he won all eight of the team categories. The following year he set a North American distance record at Westby, Wisconsin of 323 feet and finished second at the Holmenkollen Ski Jumping Festival. Competing at 17 major international tournaments he set three distance records and finished no worse than 7th. In 1964 he again dominated the U.S. Olympic Team tryouts and finished 10th at the Olympic Games. He also won two F.I.S. sanctioned meets in Europe that same year. He rounded out 1964 as the U.S. and North American ski jumping champion. He retired after the 1968 Olympic Games because of a serious injury.