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Mastro finalist for U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame

Bemidji State University professor Jim Mastro is among the finalists for the U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame Class of 2008.

Mastro, a professor of education and physical education, health and sport, is one of five finalists in the Paralympian category.

Six individual Olympians, one Olympic team and one Paralympian, along with a coach, a veteran and a special contributor, will be honored at the U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony Presented by Allstate June 19 in Chicago.

Mastro, who lost his vision while in high school, has competed in seven Paralympics, in several sports, since 1976, according to his profile on the U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame Web site. The first Paralympic athlete ever to medal in four different sports -- judo, wrestling, track and field and goalball -- Mastro has earned 10 medals including five gold, three silver and two bronze.

Mastro's profile also states that he became the first blind athlete to be a member of an Olympic team, when he was an alternate on the U.S. Greco-Roman Wrestling team in 1976. In 1996, Mastro was elected flag bearer for the U.S. Paralympic team.

The public can vote online at to help determine who will comprise the U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame Class of 2008.