snow. Olga Chappaz, Dean of the “Red Sweater”, celebrates her 100th anniversary

Like every morning, Olga Chappaz took a short walk through Belvedere, which clears the height of Chamony. The good idea is that her husband Gilbert was dismantled from Le Grand-Bornand and Eguille de Chamonix installed several chalets reassembled in the sunny side of Les Plans in front of him. A small corner of the paradise I had.

From the end of June, she will perform some fathoms in a corridor filled with spring water … of young people. One of the secrets of his Olympic form. The other is due to family tradition. After 100 years, Olga joined three older sisters, all over 100 years old, Hélène Meunier (105 years old), Jeanne Ravanel (104 years old) and Thérèse Félisaz (101 years old).

She created a “flocon”. This is the first reward for small children.

Olga Chappaz has lived at 100 of the chalet “Le Châble” for decades. It’s the perfect address for this “little” woman celebrating her 100th birthday today. If the Belvedere settlement is the Chappaz base camp, Olga is the leader of the expedition. “The story of Chappaz began at the turn of the century when his grandfather Fritz Wenger, a Swiss-German from Bern, landed in Chamonix as a sommelier at the beginning of the 20th century. He and Marie Simmond of Chamonix. He got married and ran a hotel in Les Gaillans and some high-altitude snack bars, “said Olga’s son, former president of Chamonix, and the adjoining Chalet.

Very quickly, when we waxed with beeswax, Olga reveals himself on skis when the board has no edges. She goes back and forth between a sports career and an instructor profession. Portrait medalist n ° 343 (but the second instructor wearing a “red sweater” behind Georgette Thiollière), who drew for the magazine, confessed in December 2018: So I turned to surveillance. »»

Olga had the great idea of ​​creating a “Flocon” on behalf of the Instructors Union, believing that not enough was done for the children: “It’s the children. I didn’t have a star level yet, which was aimed at giving me the first reward, “said Ski Chrono’s collaborator since its inception in 2006 and another reference for ski and mountain journalism. The human twin Gilles Chappaz explains.

Visionary … Since then, ESF has taken a good lead by marking the progress of young children with “Pioupio”, “Blancshot”, “Sifrote”, “Galauro” and “Othon”.

The last ski excursion … at the age of 95!

Gilbert, her husband, a guide instructor at EHM (High Mountain School), a member of the company, and a skilled skier himself, gently led her to the competition. “He asked the club to hire me to Kandahar in 1948, and I first ended up in France,” Olga recalled, and then she was forced to make a choice. .. But James Couttet (a key figure in French skiing, an editor’s note) convinced me and I joined the French team. She will build up her achievements before returning to her passion, education.

“I haven’t skied for a few winters, but I follow the competition on TV,” she says. Her last outing was 95 years old, she was on a family trip with Jill and Xavier, and she went to Les Zouches, who emotionally saw the thorn wall, a magnificent and winding passageway during the French Championship. I did.

At Var (Hautes-Alpes), thousands of instructors from the 70th Challenge welcomed the Dean with a singing video. In Chamony, the diplomatic leader of the “Red Sweater” is celebrated with “Snack of the Century” by her relatives and children of the Leplanar sports club.