As we enjoy the Winter Olympics, it’s good to note the “locals” competing. With the fine ski areas found in Eagle County, it’s not surprising that local athletes are doing well. In 1960, the Winter Olympics were held at Squaw Valley. Dick Mize, born in Gilman, Colorado, represented the United States on the Biathlon team.
Dick attended Red Cliff Union High School, graduating in 1953 in a class of five students. Attending Western State College after graduation, he joined the ski team. An Army stint came next, sending Dick to Fort Richardson in Anchorage, Alaska. He was assigned to a Special Service Branch that included the new Biathlon Unit, competing in the first and second World Biathlon Championships in 1958 and 1959. In 1960, tryouts for the Winter Olympics first Biathlon competition were held at Camp Hale so Dick Mize found himself home again in Eagle County for tryouts. He made the team of five men and trained in Colorado for the event. Dick Mize is a committed, lifelong athlete. He lives in Anchorage with his wife, Ann, and, with Jon Elliott, is responsible for the creation of Nordic ski trails in Kinkaid Park. He has been named a “healthy hero” by the Alaska Sports Hall of Fame, advising healthy choices in nutrition and lifestyle in order to maintain good physical health.