1995 World Championships Dave Schultz (USA) vs. (Iran)
Dave’s accomplishments on the mat made him one of the greatest American wrestlers of all time, winning 10 National Open titles and 7 World Championship medals. But, what set this man apart from other great champions was what he did off the mat. This is what elevated him into the Pantheon of wrestling immortality. Whether in a room full of foreign dignitaries or a Moscow sauna with five Russian janitors. Dave was the person that everyone was drawn to. He achieved this dynamic, not by touting his own impressive accomplishments. Dave had effortless diplomacy born out of a genuine curiosity about other people and their experiences throughout the world.
Few individuals have made an impact on the world like Dave Schultz. A decorated athlete, global ambassador, artist, teacher, and family man, Dave Schultz was a shining example of living life to its fullest. He was respected by fans worldwide for his unique, authentic, and original approach to man’s oldest and greatest sport.
ATHLETE, COACH, LEADER
He possessed an innate ability to listen, connect, and to make people feel understood. Throughout his short life, Dave applied his unique interpersonal skills to further his impassioned agenda of making the United States Wrestling Team, the best team in the world. Part elementary school teacher part Russian gangster, Dave used his relationships within the international wrestling community. He created a free exchange of knowledge between Eastern Europe (the Mecca of wrestling technique) and U.S. Athletes; something that had never been successfully achieved before, or since. From 1988 to 1996, with Dave Schultz acting as athlete, coach, and all-around spiritual leader, the U.S. Wrestling Team steadily rose through the world ranks until ultimately capturing a first World Title in 1993, and then another in 1995. Dave was a true champion in every sense of the word
Dave’s death proved catastrophic to everyone whose life he had touched both on and off the mat. Dave has been posthumously honored in almost every way possible. He has been inducted into the National Wrestling Hall of Fame, the California Hall of Fame and the San Jose Sports Hall of Fame to name a few. His extraordinary impact on wrestling endures.