Thank you for the brilliant pictures of the opening ceremonies in Barcelona (Let the Games Begin, Aug. 3). I was most moved by Peter Read Miller's shot of the torch lighting—a moment no one will soon forget. Too often after reading an excellent story, we forget to thank those responsible for the outstanding pictures.
The submerged fish-eye shot of Melvin Stewart, gold medalist in the 200 butterfly (World Beaters, Aug. 10), is one of the best sports photographs I have ever seen. My congratulations to Heinz Kluetmeier and to your other photographers. Their work at the Olympics deserves a gold medal.
What really caught my eye was John Biever's three-page pull-out photograph of Gail Devers and the other women at the start of the 100-meter dash (Dash to Glory, Aug. 10). The following three-page photo showed the finish, completing the race for me. Even though I did not sec this race on TV, SI put me there, from starting line to the finish line.
O.K., it was corny, but my favorite 1992 Olympic moment came when Jim Redmond appeared on the track to help his son Derek, a British 400-meter runner, complete his semifinal heat after Derek had suffered a torn right hamstring (Ode to Joy, Aug. 17). Athletic contests have far more losers than winners, but there was Jim Redmond, a symbol of all parents, stepping out of the stands to say, "Son, I know you lost, but I'm still right here beside you."
TERRELL W. OXFORD
In reading Gary Smith's article Let the Games Begin in the Aug. 3 issue, I have come to realize the true meaning of the Olympic spirit. The paragraphs about the Bosnia-Herzegovinians' struggle just to get their athletes to the Games is, in itself, worth all the gold medals. This is victory. Victory is not sending the world's best pro basketball players to Barcelona to satisfy our need for superficial success.
JEFFREY M. HOLMES
Thank you, Kenny Moore, for your compassionate piece about Algerian runners Hassiba Boulmerka and Noureddine Morceli (A Scream and a Prayer, Aug. 3). On occasion SI gives its readers an insight into a country and its people, and the passions of those people serve to remind us that there's a great, diverse world out there to visit and to learn about.
I enjoyed E.M. Swift's story Amity Beats Enmity (Aug. 10) and would like to congratulate gymnast Kim Zmeskal. Being under perhaps more pressure than any other athlete at the Olympic Games, I think she performed well. She's a gold medalist in my book.
What does a U.S. boxer have to do to win a fight in the Olympics (Wrong Count, Aug. 10)? I can't imagine how any young American who watched Eric Griffin's bout with Rafael Lozano on TV would dream of being an Olympic boxer. Fighters train for years only to be ripped off at the Games. The judging at Barcelona was even worse than it was at Seoul.
Quezon City, Philippines
Despite her two gold medals, I award a big thumbs-down to Gwen Torrence. During a television interview following her victory in the 200-meter race, she used the American flag to wipe her sweaty face. She insulted her country by showing such disrespect for the flag.
I was delighted to see gold medalist Gail Devers on the cover of your Aug. 10 issue. Last year I came across a news item in SI about the comeback of Devers, who had been diagnosed with Graves' disease. This was of particular interest to me because I have been involved with a group of people who were attempting to establish an organization to address the need of physicians and the public for more information about thyroid disorders. We contacted Devers, and members of our group met with her several times. She has spoken to supporters in Houston and has even become one of our founding board members. My thanks to SPORTS ILLUSTRATED for bringing us together.
SHELDON RUBENFELD, M.D.
Chairman of the Board of Directors
Thyroid Society for Education and Research Houston