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  • Kazakhstan Olympic Leader Mourned


    Timur Dossymbetov at a 2006 press conference for Almaty 2014 bid.(ATR)
    (ATR) Timur Kamalovich Dossymbetov was a friendly presence for the Kazakhstan NOC and two bids from Almaty for the Winter Olympics. 

    He died in Almaty Dec. 3 after a long illness. He was 57.

    Dossymbetov was a vice president of the Kazakhstan National Olympic Committee. Since the formation of the NOC in 1990 after the dissolution of  the Soviet Union, Dosymbetov has served as its first president, followed by a stint as secretary general. He was elected vice president in September.

    “His deep personal integrity and intelligence always made him a reference point and his professional path is a true story of tireless work for benefit of sports and promotion of Olympic values in the Republic of Kazakhstan,” says a statement from the NOC.

    Handing in the Almaty bid book to the IOC in January 2015
    He was a key figure in both bids from Almaty for the Winter Olympics, campaigning in 2005 and 2006 for 2014 and then for the past two years in the race for the 2022 Games won by Beijing in July.

    “He was one of the nicest people you could meet in the Olympic movement,” is how Terrence Burns remembers Dossymbetov. Burns was one of the advisors to the 2022 bid from Almaty.

    “He worked hard for the interests of his country and sport,” Burns tells Around the Rings.

    Dossymbetov was born in Almaty in 1957 when the city was the capital of the Kazakhstan Republic of the USSR. He became involved with sport through swimming and gravitated towards modern pentathlon.

    A member of the USSR team, he won two gold medals at the 1982 UIPM world championships in Rome. From there he launched a career as a coach and sports administrator.

    “Being involved in sports since an early age, he combined
    The writer speaks with Dossymbetov in June. (ATR)
    in his work will, commitment, energy and thoroughness,” says the statement from the Kazakhstan NOC.

    “Mr. Dossymbetov had undertaken considerable work towards the recognition of a young country within international sports realm, using his outstanding managerial skills and leading numerous Kazakhstani sports delegations during major events such as Olympic and Asian Games."

    “Modest and righteous, Mr. Dossymbetov will be remembered as a person with extreme personal integrity, willingness to help in difficulties, warmth of friendship and tolerance,” says the NOC statement.

    This writer, who spoke to him many times, would agree with that assessment.

    Written by Ed Hula.

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