Book Announcement: Indelible Tracings: The Story of the 1961 U.S. World Figure Skating Team

After eight years of research and writing, three hundred and forty interviews, and visits to libraries from coast-to-coast, Patricia Shelley Bushman is pleased to announce the publication of her new book, Indelible Tracings: The Story of the 1961 U.S. World Figure Skating Team. This comprehensive book chronicles the rise of U.S. figure skating to international prominence, provides a biographical sketch of each of the thirty-four member delegation,

describes the events leading up to the fatal flight, as well as the struggle to rebuild the sport after the tragedy, culminating in Peggy Fleming’s 1968 Olympic win in Grenoble, France. This book also pays tribute to the creation of the Memorial Fund. Readers will meet each of the thirty-four members of the team, learn of their accomplishments, and come to understand why this tragedy still impacts U.S. figure skating today.
The author grew up in a skating family. She was four years old when the accident happened and the following year she began training with John Nicks at the Iceland rink in Paramount, California, where five members of the Arctic Blades Figure Skating Club had died in the crash, including Team Manager Deane McMinn, coach Bill Kipp, and bronze medalist Rhode Michelson. There was a beautiful plaque in the rink listing all thirty-four members of the delegation, which she saw every day growing up. Her curiosity about the people listed on the plaque planted the seed to one day write about this special group of people. A U.S. junior ladies medalist and Pacific Coast senior ladies champion, she was the proud recipient of the Rhode Lee Michelson memorial trophy.
Early reviews have praised this detailed account of the 1961 World Team. One 1961 Team contemporary said, “[Patty has] done an amazing job of combining history, information, character studies, technicalities, locales, and all the many facets of the world called ‘figure skating’ into a wonderful and readable book. The research was incredible and thorough, and she put it all together with personal interviews—a masterful accomplishment. I’m so glad that Patty always knew that this book should be written—and most importantly—written by her.”
Indelible Tracings, which sells for $29.95, is available for purchase at and on Amazon. A portion of all sales will be donated to the Memorial Fund. The book will be on sale during the 2011 Championships in Greensboro, North Carolina. Patricia Bushman was also the research consultant for the upcoming film Rise, which debuts on February 17, 2011. For further information on Indelible Tracings, please contact the publisher at