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Jeffrey Shiffrin, Loving Father of Olympic, World Champion Passes Unexpectedly

By U.S. Ski & Snowboard
February, 3 2020
Mikaela, Eileen and Jeff
Mikaela poses with mother Eileen and father Jeff at the 2017 World Cup Finals in Aspen, Colo. (Tom Pennington - Getty Images)

U.S. Ski & Snowboard and the entire ski and riding community mourn the passing of Jeff Shiffrin, who passed away unexpectedly on Sunday, February 2nd.  

Jeff Shiffrin with his wife Eileen made Vail, Colo., their home decades ago, and together raised two remarkable alpine ski racers and humans. Taylor Shiffrin was a member of the two-time NCAA Champion University of Denver Ski Team. Olympic and World Champion Mikaela Shiffrin’s skiing success is remarkable.

“I am without words today as we mourn the loss of Jeff Shiffrin,” said Tiger Shaw, CEO of U.S. Ski & Snowboard. “Jeff was a good friend and we will all miss him terribly. Our—and the entire ski world’s—thoughts and prayers go out to his family during this incredibly difficult time.”

Jeff was an anesthesiologist with Vail Health and Anesthesia Partners of Colorado, treating and helping many injured skiers and riders. He was an avid photographer, often having traveled to Mikaela’s World Cup races photographing Mikaela and other U.S. Ski Team athletes. Extremely proud of his daughter, he was rarely in a team picture on the podium because he was always behind the camera capturing the moment. His contributions to all aspects of the skiing and riding world are immeasurable.

Mikaela and Eileen returned from Europe on Sunday afternoon, and Jeff was surrounded by family and close friends during his final hours. He was 65.

Shiffrin Family
The Shiffrin family poses together after Taylor proposed to his girlfriend (now fiance) Kristiana in October. 

In a post on Instagram, Mikaela said, “My family is heartbroken beyond comprehension about the unexpected passing of my kindhearted, loving, caring, patient, wonderful father. Our mountains, our ocean, our sunrise, our heart, our soul, our everything. He taught us so many valuable lessons…but above everything else, he taught us the golden rule: be nice, think first. This is something I will carry with me forever. He was the firm foundation of our family and we miss him terribly. Thank you, from the depths of my heart, for respecting my family’s privacy as we grieve during this unimaginable and devastating time.”

Mikaela is expected to remain in Colorado, and her return to the World Cup is unknown at this time. 

Jeff is survived by his loving wife Eileen, his daughter Mikaela, his son Taylor and fiancé Kristiana Oslund, as well as his sister Lauren Huelsebusch and her husband Juergen Huelsebusch. Jeff’s memorial will be private. The family requests that, in lieu of flowers, donations be directed to U.S. Ski & Snowboard and the Alzheimer’s Association

Read Jeff's obituary, courtesy of the Vail Daily
Read "Remembering Jeff Shiffrin, a rock in Mikaela Shiffrin’s mountaintop" by Tim Layden