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Inductee Profile

Gary Richie


Gary Richie was a two-time state qualifier in high school wrestling, continued his wrestling career at the collegiate level at UW-River Falls and then became Rice Lake High School’s head wrestling coach in the 1983-84 season. Richie graduated from Barron High School in 1979 and from UW-River Falls in 1983 with degrees in English education and journalism, after which he was an English teacher at Rice Lake High School. But for all his accomplishments in a short time as a wrestler and coach, it was a brain injury in the summer of 1984 that became the springboard for Richie’s most remarkable contributions to his sport and as an inspiration for many people. After coming out of a coma, Richie began a long journey of rehabilitation. Throughout that journey, he has written a number of books and pamphlets on the plight of the brain-injured, while also serving as an assistant wrestling coach at Rice Lake High School, a volunteer at St. Joseph’s School in Rice Lake, and an organizer, along with his father, Jim, of the Rice Lake Brain Injury Support Group. Richie’s efforts and accomplishments, much of which he credits to his physical and mental training in sports, earned him induction into the National Wrestling Hall of Fame with a Courage Award in early 2015. Gary passed away in October of 2018 at the age of 57.

Gary Richie
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