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Olympic gold medal won by ‘Boys in the Boat’ rower to be auctioned

Feb 29, 2024, 1:37 PM | Updated: 2:01 pm

Image: Grey Flannel Auctions is auctioning off a gold medal from one of the "Boys in the Boat," Oly...

Grey Flannel Auctions is auctioning off a gold medal from one of the "Boys in the Boat," Olympic rower John White. (Photo courtesy of Grey Flannel Auctions)

(Photo courtesy of Grey Flannel Auctions)

An Olympic gold medal won by a “Boys in the Boat” rower will be auctioned in Arizona.

John White, known as “Johnny,” rowed for the University of Washington (UW) when they won gold in the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin.

According to the Olympics website, White graduated in metallurgical engineering. He then worked in sales for Bethlehem Steel.

The “Boys in the Boat” film highlights White’s and his crew’s journey from junior varsity to the Olympics. In the movie, White is played by Tom Varey.

More on the film: Clooney’s ‘Boys in the Boat’ both stirring and a tad stodgy

George Clooney directed the movie and filmed parts of it on the UW campus.

“Set against the backdrop of the Depression Era, the film highlights the determination and resilience of the eight-man crew and their coxswain, who overcame adversity to achieve Olympic glory,” wrote a news release from Grey Flannel Auctions.

The first trailer was released in October and the film came out last December:

The film is based on a New York Times bestselling book by Daniel James Brown.

“The narrative follows the underdog crew as they defeat rivals and ultimately emerge victorious over the world’s best rowers, defying Hitler’s orchestrated display of German superiority,” wrote the news release.

According to Grey Flannel Auctions, White came from a family who faced hardships. His determination to prove himself shined in his rowing.

“Johnny’s determination, fueled by familial expectations, propels him to become a gold medalist rower, embodying the spirit of the underdog nation,” wrote the news release.

More history of the rowing team: Mystery stretches from Cedar River ghost town to “Boys in the Boat”

The gold medal will also come with a “letter of provenance” from White’s family.

Grey Flannel Auctions is a family-owned company in Scottsdale, Arizona, specializing in jerseys and memorabilia. It offers jerseys from Gretzky to baseballs signed by Babe Ruth.

The company will begin the bidding for the gold medal in April and end in May, with a starting bid of $10,000.

Julia Dallas is a content editor at MyNorthwest. You can read her stories here. Follow Julia on X, formerly known as Twitter, here and email her here.

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Olympic gold medal won by ‘Boys in the Boat’ rower to be auctioned