Dickson: Remembering Deedee Corradini after the Olympics news today

Nov 29, 2023, 1:00 PM

Deedee Corradini, the former Salt Lake City mayor, was instrumental in getting the Olympics to Utah...

Closing ceremonies Feb. 22, 1998 — Juan Samaranche hands the Olympic flag over to Salt Lake City Mayor Deedee Corradini. (Deseret News file photo)

(Deseret News file photo)

SALT LAKE CITY — I just listened to the newsroom erupt in cheers when the announcement was made that Salt Lake City is the preferred city to host the Winter Olympics in 2034. After taking in the joy of that news, my mind went to an old friend. And I think Salt Lake City’s first female mayor, Deedee Corradini, would be so proud to know that the Olympics are coming back to Salt Lake City. She was instrumental in bringing the 2002 games here.

Deedee Corradini and the efforts to get the Olympics

She traveled the globe meeting with IOC members. Corradini lobbied the state legislature for a voter-approved sales tax hike to help build our world-class facilities. We have her to thank, at least in part, for the TRAX lines that serve so many Utahns today.

Corradini was the first woman to ever receive the Olympic flag directly. It was a magical moment that happened at the end of the games in Nagano, Japan. She was also the driving force behind women’s ski jumping being added as an Olympic sport and served as the president of the Women’s Ski Jumping USA for a decade.

I didn’t know Corradini as well as many did, but we developed a real friendship during the years of my interviewing her in her various capacities. She was always warm, encouraging and knowledgeable about so much. I looked up to her, and I liked her.

And I miss her.

Taken too soon

(Photo Steve Friggin/AP)

It is just wrong that she isn’t still with us to celebrate this day. We lost this amazing woman to cancer eight years ago now. She was only 70 when she passed. Corradini would still be skiing and drumming up support for the games if she was with us today.

She would be laughing and smiling and congratulating everyone who had anything to do with it.

She would be encouraging young athletes, especially female athletes, to shoot for the stars.

Corradini was one of our stars, and I pray she is looking down on us and cheering today’s announcement.




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Dickson: Remembering Deedee Corradini after the Olympics news today