The Olympic Torch Relay Team

Alabama - Richard W. Overbey
passed away January 27, 2010

Montana - Sam R. Scharar

Alaska - Matthew T. Pauli

Nebraska - Julie L. Brinkman

Arizona - Charles Morgan Kerr, M.D.
passed away July 3, 1999

Nevada - L. Glenn Allred
passed away November 27, 2000

Arkansas - Pat Wyatt

New Hampshire - Elizabeth AnneTasony

California - Susan (Bonnie) Warner

New Jersey - Sally E. Aaronson

Colorado - Dave Chavez

New Mexico - Steven L. Shoup

Connecticut - Barbara Jean Colman
passed away February 24, 2000
Barb's obit ---- letter from Barb 1999

New York - Michael Luce
2011 article

Delaware - Carol P. Arnold

North Carolina - Frank M. Elliott, III

District of Columbia - Anthony T. Diamond

North Dakota - Stephen L. Ganzkow-Wold

Florida - Cindel Stewart

Oklahoma - Vickie McCormick

Georgia - Deforrest Jackson
passed away November 14, 2013 obit

Oregon - Shirley K. Durtschi

Hawaii - Stephen Song Paik

Ohio - Deborah A. Zirkle

Idaho - Sean McDevitt

Pennsylvania - Maureen P. Sullivan

Illinois - Andrea Harris
passed away April 2, 2017 - obit

Rhode Island - Nancy Jane Cloughen

Indiana - Sandee Norris

South Carolina - Margaret Walworth

Iowa - Laraine M. Carmichael Nelson

South Dakota - Christopher G. Owens

Kansas - Heidi Anne Wallace

Tennessee - Billie Barton

Kentucky - Richard Soaper

Texas - Eugene F. Deutscher

Louisiana - John E. Beaumont

Utah - Christie Willardson Kirkword
passed away 2006
Christy's Obituary

Maine - Beverly S. Johnson
Good Morning America
2018 interview


Vermont - Dorothy L. Helling

Maryland - Mary Ellen Williams

Virginia - Suzanne Mink

Massachusetts - Paul A. Ruggeri
Died in an auto accident October 23, 1982

Washington - Donna L. Searight

Michigan - Ronald E. Landrum

Wisconsin - Alison L. Carlson

Minnesota - Maggie Fillmore

West Virginia - Ed C. Jepson

Mississippi - Marshall E. Shields

Wyoming - Steven A. Simon

Missouri - Jeffrey W. Cox
passed away January 19, 2023

 Lake Placid - Robert A. Lopez
passed away March 12, 2007

 About the Team

In a symbolic gesture to the ideals of ancient Greece, the 52 runners were selected to represent the original Greek concept of staging this premier sports event for the "Whole Man".

The 52 men and women represent the best of America. They are well-rounded people who, in addition to being good athletes and strong runners, are involved with challenging professions and are interested in music, art, drama, and scholarship.

The 52 runners represent all 50 states plus the district of Columbia and the host village of lake Placid. They were selected from over 8,000 persons who responded to the LPOOC request for runners.

Included among the finalists are a doctor, a minister, a lawyer, two military officers, a West Point cadet, four high school students, three law students, a college instructor, a high school teacher, seven college students, a lobsterman (woman), four housewives, a plumber, a banker, several corporate executives, a TV reporter, a theater technician, and an automobile factory worker, all representing America's "walks of life".

One member of the team is a former Olympic bobsledder, and several of the torchbearers compete in marathons, but most run "just for the fun of it".

The torchbearers range in age from 16 to 56, and will each be required to carry the two-foot high, one and one-half pound Olympic torch between 18 and 30 miles during the 1,000 mile journey in the United States.

In the past, hundreds and even thousands of runners have passed the Flame during its relay from Olympia. In many cases, the Flame has been run throughout the entire host country. some host nations have used two torch routs (Grenoble, Innsbruck) or, even three, as in Sapporo. The Lake Placid Olympic Organizing Committee has chosen to recruit runners from each state to accomplish broad national participation in yet another way.

A very rigorous selection criteria for torchbearers was developed, reflecting the rich heritage of the Ancient and Modern Olympic Games. The ideal torchbearer is one who best exemplifies the ancient Greek ideal of the "Whole Man" - an athlete, an artist, a scholar, a thinker; a person who regards all these facets of his life as equally important to his overall well being.

A selection committee reviewed all applications and selected approximately 260 finalists, five from each of the 52 jurisdictions. The selection committee also considered in what ways each candidate would best represent the people of his or her state or city. All 260 finalists were interviewed in March 1979, and the selection committee evaluated the candidates on the basis of personal appearance, articulation of the Olympic ideals, and general attitude (attributes not measurable by written forms). In addition, as a last test, all finalists were asked to run three miles (5 km) at a 7.5 minute pace, to prove that they were capable of the physical requirements of the relay itself.

The torch bearers will be symbols of the Olympic tradition and spirit, and because their number is small, they will become the focus of public attention in their own states. Thus, their personal attributes will demonstrate that the amateur spirit of participation in sports is alive and thriving in the United States. They will also serve, in their home states, as good-will ambassadors for the Olympic movement. In turn, when they arrive at the Olympic site, they will serve to represent the support of all the people of the United States for the Olympic Winter Games being held in Lake Placid.

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