Date of Birth:
City/State of Birth:
Steamboat Springs, CO
Olympics and Events Attended:
1972 Olympics, Sapporo, Japan - Ski Jumping
Berry was the only Steamboat skier at the 1972 Olympics games. He placed 47th on the 90-meter hill and 52nd on the 70-meter hill. He took third in the U.S. National Jumping Championships in 1972.
Berry, who was 22 when he completed, made history as South Dakota's first Winter Olympian. Berry did not have an abundance of time to train for the Olympics, having graduated from Dartmouth University the year before. Reaching the Olympics was an impressive feat for a boy from Deadwood who worked on his craft at Terry Peak.
“Growing up, there was a lot of jumpers in that area and my father would pack us up every weekend, and we would be going to competitions in Colorado,” Berry said. “Ski jumping was my winter sport, but I also did other sports like running cross country and football.”
There was little question that Berry had Olympic-level talent in ski jumping. He won the junior national championship in both his junior and senior years in high school. He said he first began dreaming about being an Olympian during the 1960 Olympics at the age of 10, around the same time he first started getting invited to national ski jumping camps.
Berry currently lives in Colorado and is listed as part of Steamboat Springs' "Ski Town USA" tradition of Olympians. After the 2002 Winter Olympics at Salt Lake City, Berry was pictured and listed as one of 50 Olympians who lived and trained at Steamboat’s Ski Town USA.
Berry’s jumping career did not last long after the Olympics. “I broke my ankle pretty bad on a 160-meter hill in (what was then) Yugoslavia about six weeks after the Olympics,” he said. “Three surgeries and 18 months later, I finally walked again.
“It wasn’t that difficult (not to ski jump again because) in those days you didn’t make any money, and I was in debt. It was time to get on with life and figure out what to do.”