The attached link presents a moving narrative with photographs of the 1961 United States World Figure Skating Team that was tragically killed en route to the 1961 World Figure Skating Championships in Prague.
At that time, the majority of the members of the ISU voted to cancel the Worlds that year in memory of the lost US Team. President John F. Kennedy issued the following statement from the White House:
"This disaster has brought tragedy to many American families and is also a painful loss to the international community of sports. Our country has sustained
a great loss of talent and grace that had brought pleasure to people all over the world."
The American men and women singles skaters had dominated the World and Olympic competition during the post World War II years until 1961. Great skaters such as Dick Button, Haynes Jenkins, David Jenkins, Tenley Albright, and Carol Heiss all won World and Olympic gold medals. After the plane crash, the U.S. figure skating program undertook a massive reconstruction program, and to its credit, the very young American team who competed at the 1964 Winter Olympics in Innsbruck, Austria, came home with a bronze medal, won by 14-year-old US men's champion, Scott Allen, a sixth-place finish by 15-year-old US women's champion Peggy Fleming, and other commendable finishes by the rest of the team.