Dave Forstner has lifted more than 700 pounds off the floor and off his chest. He’s put nearly 1,000 pounds on his shoulders, voluntarily squatted down and stood back up.
But even Forstner isn’t safe from public speaking butterflies.
“I would be more comfortable if they put a bench press up there and I had to bench 800 pounds,” Forstner said, laughing, of having to give a speech Saturday at the Port Huron Sports Hall of Fame induction banquet.
Forstner may be a bit nervous, but he’s overjoyed to have to give it, as he is one of seven inductees – six individuals and one team – in the 2015 class. He will be inducted on Saturday along with Marshall “Duke” Campbell, Randy Shagena, Daryel McCarrel, Mary Kay Baribeau, Jacqueline “Jackie” Jeffrey and the 1970 St. Clair County Community College men’s golf team.
The induction banquet will be held in the Atrium at the student center at SC4. Refreshments will be served at 5:30 p.m., followed by dinner at 6:30 p.m. This year’s guest speaker is former Denver Broncos offensive lineman George Goeddeke.
Forstner, a 21-time world champion powerlifter, is a bit of a different inductee to the Hall of Fame, as none of his accomplishments came at an area high school or SC4.
“I pay attention to stuff like that,” Forstner said. “Every year I kind of pay attention to the people that go in, and it’s a lot of (former high school athletes). It’s something I always thought would be cool growing up in Port Huron. It’s a really awesome honor to be in.”
Forstner began powerlifting in 1990, one year after graduating from Port Huron High School, where a broken collarbone had derailed his prep athletic career before it could start.
He said he started because he always liked being strong. He’s certainly been that.
In a little more than two decades, Forstner has set 26 state records and seven world records. He has benched 760 pounds in competition, deadlifted 749 pounds and squatted 925 pounds. He was the first member of the World Association of Benchers and Dead Lifters to hit the 700-pound mark in both the bench press and deadlift.
He is a member of the WABDL Hall of Fame, and remains active in the sport. He will compete at the world championships later this year.
“I don’t think I’ll ever quit,” Forstner said. “My wife, my parents, they’re all getting on me to quit. But If I did, I’d probably be a big couch potato.”
Contact Paul Costanzo at (810) 989-6251 or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @PaulCostanzo.