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Peggy Fleming

Olympic Gold Medal Figure Skater

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American figure skater Peggy Fleming performs a routine at the Olympics in Grenoble, France, February 11, 1968. She won the gold medal.
Express Newspapers/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Basic Facts:

Dates: July 27, 1948 -
Known for: figure skating success, including at the Olympics and in the Ice Follies and on television
Sport: figure skating
Country: United States
Olympics: 1968 Winter Olympics, Grenoble, France
Also known as: Peggy Gale Fleming, Peggy Fleming Jenkins

Titles and Honors:

  • five United States titles, 1964 - 1968
  • three world titles, 1966 - 1968
  • Olympic gold medal, figure skating, Grenoble, February 10, 1968
  • Female Athlete of the Year, Associated Press, 1968
  • U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame

Education:

  • Colorado College, 1966-

Background, Family:

  • Mother: Doris Elizabeth Deal
  • Father: Albert Eugene, newspaper press operator
  • Siblings: three sisters

Marriage, Children:

  • husband: Greg Jenkins (married 1970; dermatologist)
  • children: Andy, Todd

About Peggy Fleming:

Peggy Fleming did not begin skating until her family moved from California to Cleveland, Ohio, when she was nine. She won her first championship at age eleven. Her family returned to California in 1960 and Peggy Fleming began training with coach Bill Kipp.

In 1961, tragedy struck U.S. figure skating, as a plane crash killed eighteen members of the U.S. skating team on its way to a World Championship competition. Bill Kipp was also killed in the crash.

Peggy Fleming was one of the keys to rebuilding American figure skating. Working with coach John Nicks, she won her first U.S. championship in 1965 -- her first of five in a row. To help his daughter win by training in higher altitudes, Peggy Fleming's father took a job with a newspaper in Colorado Springs. After this, she won her first World Championship in Switzerland. She began working with coach Carlo Fassi.

Wearing a costume her mother made for her at home, Peggy Fleming won the Olympic gold medal in figure skating in 1968, amazing the world with her artistic execution. She turned professional, and continued to be quite the celebrity. She was featured in television specials and ice shows including the Ice Follies.

She married Greg Jenkins in 1970. In 1981, Peggy Fleming became an ABC Sports commentator for skating events in the US and internationally.

In 1994, Sports Illustrated featured Peggy Fleming as one of the most important athletes in a forty year period.

In 1998, Peggy Fleming was diagnosed with breast cancer, and had a lumpectomy and radiation. She has been active in speaking about early detection and treatment of breast cancer, and she has been a spokeswoman for a calcium supplement. She and her husband now own and run the Fleming Jenkins Vineyards and Winery in California.

More About Peggy Fleming:

  • Peggy Fleming. In Her Place: Inner Views and Outer Spaces. 2000.
  • Peggy Fleming. The Long Program: Skating Toward Life's Victories. 1999.
  • Peggy Fleming. The Official Book of Figure Skating. 1998.
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  • Charles Morse. Peggy Fleming. 1974.
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  • Elizabeth Van Steenwyk. Peggy Fleming: Cameo of a Champion. 1978.
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