US Bobsledder Bill Schuffenhauer detained and questioned by police

Posted By: The Ski Channel on February 26, 2010 7:50 am

Bill Schuffenhauer has an interesting story. The 36-year-old bobsledding silver medalist grew up with a drug addicted mother, and spent much of his time homeless. He has overcome adversity to become an Olympic medalist, trying this year for a gold.

In order to reach these Games, Schuffenhauer sacrificed quite a bit. He gave up his job as a banker in order to train. That meant leaving his fiancee, nurse Ruthann Savage, to support him and their 4-year-old son Corben. He had problems getting sponsorship and subsequently lost his house and car on this tough road to the Games.

Whether or not this played a factor in the investigation is unknown. What is known is that Schuffenhauer was questioned by police yesterday after being detained following an argument with Savage. He was released after police found no evidence of crime, although an investigation is ongoing.

Schuffenhauer, though clearly shaken, will compete in Friday and Saturday’s four-man bobsled competitions.

 Darrin Steele, chief executive of the U.S. Bobsled and Skeleton Federation, is confident nothing more will come of this. “It looks like nothing further is going to happen,” Steele said. “Looking at the whole thing, I don’t foresee any way that he would not race, regardless of how things progress. It seems like the kind of thing that blows over fairly quickly. … I suspect there won’t be much of a story.”

Steele added, “The sacrifices he made are more than most people, more than I would have made as an athlete,” Steele said. “We’ve got a lot of admiration for Billy and for what he has done to get here…He is the first to reach out to any of our charity partners. He’s the first to help with the kids at the camps, so we’ve got a lot of respect for how he got here and how he lives his life. We’re certainly going to give him the benefit of the doubt until there is a time where we can’t. But I don’t anticipate this being that time at all.”