Jean Gaertner, 2019
Jean was raised in Los Angeles and developed into a tremendous athlete in both volleyball and track and field while attending Washington HS. She began USVBA play in the 1949 and from 1956-60 she started for the national champion Santa Monica Mariners and Long Beach Shamrocks (winning 11 titles during her career). She then moved to the USA national team around finishing her Cal State Los Angeles degree (she was inducted into the CSULA HOF in 1989).
Jean first participated in the 1960 Rome Olympics in the track & field high jump, because there was no volleyball. In 1964 she competed for the first USA Olympic VB Team in Tokyo. She became the historical first USA female Olympian to ever compete in two non-related sports. She won silver medals at the 1959 and the 1963 Pan-American VB Games. She was a 8-time USVBA All-American and 3-time Player of Year. She also won both beach tournaments she entered in the late 1950s. She is a member of the International VB HOF and a member of USAV 75th Anniversary Team (1948-77). She was named as an ‘All-time Great Player’ in 1971. She is currently retired in Colorado.