[Radio] Re-Visiting The Wrongs Of The 1976 Montreal Games

Photo Courtesy: Montreal Gazette

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As the 2016 Rio Olympic Games wrap up with today’s Closing Ceremony in Rio Swimming World wanted to take a moment to remember the Olympic Games that took place forty years ago and all who suffered during those Olympic Games in Montreal.

The Current, a popular radio show based out of Canada through CBC Radio, recently took the time to talk to Anne Jardin-Alexander, a member of the 1976 Canadian Olympic Team who won two bronze medals at the Montreal Games.

Jardin-Alexander noted that the first time she encountered the women of East Germany was in the locker room when she heard what she thought to be men’s voices. Peering around the corner of lockers, Jardin-Alexander observed that these deep voices belonged not to men, but instead to burly women.

Shirley Babashoff, a member of the 1976 U.S. Olympic Team, was one of the few swimmers to speak out about the East German women during the 1976 Montreal Games earning herself the nickname “Surly Shirley.” When asked about whether or not she supported Babashoff’s speaking out, Jardin-Alexander commented that unfortunately she was not supportive of Babashoff at the time.

When talking about her two bronze medals Jardin-Alexander noted that, “We tend to celebrate the winning ones as opposed to those who do a great job and earn a medal of any color. To win any medal of any color is quite an amazing performance.”

Host of The Current, Connie Walker, also took the time to talk to Swimming World’s Brent Rutemiller who has been at the forefront of righting the wrongs of the 1976 Montreal Games for many years.

One of the biggest goals Rutemiller noted should be not a re-distribution of the Olympic medals, but instead a distribution of duplicate medals in a ceremony for all who were victims. A ceremony like this, according to Rutemiller, would be best suited to take place at one of the upcoming World Championships either in 2017 (Budapest) or 2019 (South Korea).

“The big thing is that we want the IOC to recognize that there were victims on both sides,” expressed Rutemiller.

Listen to the CBC full radio interview here:

Related Video From SwimmingWorld.TV Vault First Published July 27, 2014

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Author: Taylor Brien

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Taylor Brien is the Circulation and Operations Manager at Swimming World. A native of Bettendorf, IA and a 2015 graduate of Illinois College, she has covered a variety of events since joining the SW team in 2015, including the NCAA Championships, World Championships, Olympic Trials, and 2016 Rio Olympic Games.

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