Lute Olson’s Hidden Identity

University of Arizona men’s basketball coach Lute Olson had his father’s family history revealed to him this week. Stephanie Innes (Arizona Daily Star – posted on, writes about Olson’s background, and the genealogy work that was done on his behalf (as a total surprise to him). It was particularly hard, since he’s from North Dakota, and Olsons and Olsens in North Dakota are almost like Smiths and Williams in any other state. It was also difficult because his father had suddenly passed away when he was five, and his grandparents were already deceased.

Excerpt from the article:

During a genealogy presentation by local members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on Thursday, University of Arizona basketball coach Lute Olson learned that Olson wasn’t always his family name. For generations, his family used the surname of Pukerud, which was spelled Pugerud when his ancestors lived in Norway.

Another good article about genealogy and the interest that has been steadily growing.

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