Steamboat ski legend Jim “Moose” Barrows out of hospital after brain surgery
Steamboat Springs — Steamboat Olympian Jim “Moose” Barrows is out of the hospital this week and has been making significant strides since undergoing surgery in Denver for multiple brain tumors, while receiving good wishes from other ski greats, as well as friends near and far.
Moose “seems to be improving physically. While he still has some confusion, he is much improved,” Barrows’ sister, Nancy Gray, of Steamboat Springs, wrote Dec. 10. “It is overwhelming how much power comes from the strength of all the well wishes and support.”
On Dec. 8, she wrote, “His brain continues to heal at what seems to be unbelievable speed.”
Barrows was flown to a Denver hospital Dec. 2 after showing signs of confusion and brain swelling. On Dec. 11, he took another step in his recovery with a walk outdoors.
A fearless downhill racer, Barrows competed in the 1968 Winter Olympics in Grenoble, France.
Friends, including those from the competitive skiing world, are sending good wishes Barrow’s way and receiving updates on his condition via the Caring Bridge website (search for Jim Moose Barrows).
“Moose,” as he is known to everyone in Steamboat, was a member of the 1968 U.S. Alpine Olympic team in 1968.
Former Steamboat resident and 1972 Alpine Winter Olympian Hank Kashiwa reached out to Barrows on Caring Bridge.
“Mooser, after so many hospital visits, this one should be a piece of cake!” Kashiwa wrote. “Be sure to have your golf clubs ready, you’ve already gotten too much cash from my pocket! God’s speed pard.”
The good news from Dec. 7 was that “the two large tumors are gone.” But Barrows had more treatment ahead of him to deal with smaller tumors, Gray wrote, including a brain mapping MRI.
“Once they locate the remaining tumors, they will make a plan to zap them with radiation,” Gray wrote. “Then, he will wait for three months to see how it all worked.”
Gray’s spirit was buoyant Dec. 9, when her brother left the hospital.
“We are all so glad to have him on the mend. And many thanks to all of our friends for the support and well wishes,” she wrote.
And Barrows got a big lift himself to come out of a therapy session Dec. 10 in time to watch Steamboat resident Verne Lundquist call his final college football television broadcast, with the traditional clash between the Army and Navy service academies.
While her brother was experiencing some confusion as of Dec. 10 and continues to need physical, speech and occupational therapy, Gray said the messages from acquaintances on Caring Bridge boost his spirits.
Those acquaintances included a teammate from the the 1968 Olympic team, Kiki Cutter, of New Hampshire, and Steamboat Olympic freestyle skier Ann Battelle.
Barrows moved here with his family in 1951 at age 7 and became an accomplished four-way skier who did not specialize in the downhill event until after his college racing career.
The Caring Bridge site has received more than 2,000 visits from Barrows’ well-wishers.
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