July 18, 1903|
|Died||June 27, 1993
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
|Men's Freestyle wrestling|
|British Empire Games|
James "Jim" Trifunov (Jarkovac, Serbia, July 18, 1903 – Winnipeg, Manitoba, June 27, 1993) was a Serbian-Canadian freestyle sport wrestler who competed in the 1924 Summer Olympics, in the 1928 Summer Olympics, and in the 1932 Summer Olympics. His parents came from Jarkovac, Serbia, and settled in Truax, Saskatchewan, in 1910.
Of Serbian ancestry, Jim Trifunov began his career as a newsboy in Regina, later he took up wrestling at his local YMCA in 1922. One year later he had won his first of nine almost-consecutive Canadian bantamweight championships, missing only the 1931 edition due to an injury. His successes sent him to three editions of the Olympics Games, the most notable of which was in 1928, when he captured a bronze medal by overcoming Harold Sansum of Great Britain in the match for the bronze medal. He also won a gold medal in the bantamweight division at the inaugural 1930 British Empire Games by defeating Joseph Reid (wrestler) of England. He retired from active competition following the 1932 Olympics and resumed his career with Regina's Leader-Post. In 1936 he was sent by the Sifton Publishing Company from Regina to Winnipeg to work with the city’s Winnipeg Free Press, where he would remain for the rest of his life. While there he took up coaching and sports administration, eventually serving as president of the Manitoba Wrestling Association for a quarter of a century. He also held executive roles in the Canadian Amateur and Manitoba Wrestling Associations and was coach and manager of Canada’s wrestling delegations to the 1952, 1956, and 1960 Summer Olympics, as well as every edition of the British Empire Games between 1954 and 1970. Among his many honors, he was made a member of the Order of Canada in 1981 and has been inducted into the Canadian Olympic (1953), Canada's Sports Hall of Fame in 1960, and the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of fame in 1966. Also, he was inducted into the Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame in 1981.
His voluntary activities have included school-crossing patrols, which have spread across the continent.
Certificates and Awards
- The Amateur Athletic Union of Canada certificate to Jim Trifunov for his work with the youth of Canada and his fellow sportsmen (Archives Canada).
- British Columbia 1958 Centennial award to Jim Trifunov for the Canadian Amateur Wrestling Championships (Archives Canada).
- An Award presented to Jim Trifunov by the Manitoba Sports Federation for a builder of sport (Archives Canada).
- Card that reads Canadian Amateur Wrestling Hall of Fame James "Jim" Trifunov Admitted March 16, 1975 (Archives Canada).
- Canadian Amateur Wrestling Association James Trifunov Air Canada Sports Award for Executive of the Year (Archives Canada).
- "James Trifunov Olympic Results". sports-reference.com. Archived from the original on 2013-09-24. Retrieved 2013-09-08.
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