The Ice Bowl, the Sneak, and the Family Who Shot the Packers for 70 Years
For fans of American football, the ending of the Ice Bowl on Dec 31, 1967 is one of the all time classics. The classic images of the win remain in our minds, like this one that shows Starr & his blocker, Kramer in the end zone:
But did you know it was taken by a 16 year old high school student with his father’s semi-pro Nikkormat & a Tokina 135mm lens? As the saying goes, here’s the rest of the story…
It wasn’t just cold at Lambeau Field. With the temperature at 13 below zero at kickoff, and the wind chill at 36 below, Dec. 31, 1967, ranked as the coldest New Year’s Eve day that Green Bay, Wisconsin, had ever witnessed.
Some 51,000 loyal fans slipped on balaclavas and slugged down brandy from flasks to watch the NFL championship game between the Packers and the Dallas Cowboys. The stakes were enormous: Green Bay could claim its third consecutive NFL title with a victory, and the winner would go on to play the AFL champion Oakland Raiders in the second Super Bowl.
John Biever was a 16-year-old high-school junior from the nearby town of Port Washington. He was “cold as ice” throughout the game, he said, but did his best to ignore the harsh conditions because he was on the field assisting his father, Vernon Biever, the Packers’ longtime team photographer.