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Kurt Gruben

Kurt Gruben

Chief Illiniwek 28 | Specialist, Ossur Americas | Class of 1992

Kurt Gruben’s most cherished memento from his days as Chief Illiniwek hangs in a frame for all to see.

“It’s a picture that a Marching Illini dad took of me doing the spread eagle jump in the south end zone at Memorial Stadium,” says Chief No. 28 (1990-91), now living in Sheboygan, Wis.

“It was my first performance back after an ACL reconstruction surgery. This dad simply approached me out of the blue later in the season and presented me with the framed picture, which was a pleasant surprise for me.”

A mechanical engineering grad, Gruben has done well for himself post-Illinois. He’s spent the past 11 years working for Ossur, an Iceland-based medical device company. 

“I work in their prosthetics department and provide clinical education and lectures on their latest innovations for amputees,” says Gruben, a senior clinical specialist.