That's what the family and colleagues of Jack O'Hara will try to do. The executive producer of ABC Sports for the past five years, O'Hara was on board with his wife, Janet, and their 13-year-old daughter, Caitlin, and leaves behind twin 12-year-old sons. O'Hara, 39, was en route to the Tour de France to supervise coverage in what was to have been his final assignment for the network.
O'Hara's intelligence and upbeat disposition enabled him to rise swiftly to the top; he became executive sports producer in 1991, just eight years after starting as a production assistant. And though ESPN's recent takeover of ABC Sports led to his unceremonious dismissal last month—a move that drew protests from his colleagues—O'Hara refused to complain publicly and attended to his duties to the end. "Change is good," he had said.
Michel Breistroff was familiar with change. The 25-year-old hockey player had left Roubaix, France, in 1990 to play and study at Harvard, from which he graduated this spring with an anthropology degree. He was returning home to continue working toward becoming an Olympian, a dream he had nearly realized in '94. Training with the French team that year, Breistroff suffered a fractured skull and was the final defenseman cut. "I'll remember most the times I enjoyed with him one-on-one," said Boston Bruin Ted Donato, who played with Breistroff at Harvard. "A lot of people will be extremely sad."
Dude Looks like an M.D.
First there was the David. Now there's the Dude. Vince Nalbone's sculpture may never attain the stature of Michelangelo's marble monument to the Renaissance spirit, but, as toothpick surfing art goes, it's a bitchin' masterpiece.
Nalbone, a 33-year-old car, nose and throat specialist, used 150,000 toothpicks, four gallons of Elmer's glue and his operating room dexterity to construct the life-sized figure of a crouching surfer. "It took a long time," says Nalbone of his work on the statue, the full name of which is—what else?—Surfer Dude.
A native of upstate New York and a self-described sports addict, Nalbone had never tried surfing until he moved to Los Angeles in 1991 to serve his residency at USC Medical Center. "I figured, when in Rome...and borrowed a board," he says. He was quickly hooked. Long hours at the hospital cut into his wave time, however, and Nalbone turned to art as a way to keep close to the surfing culture. "I had made a 12-inch water-skier out of toothpicks when I was in medical school," he says. "My goal had always been to make something life-sized. It ended up taking 4½ years."
Nalbone, who left USC this month to take a fellowship at the University of Chicago—and brought the Dude and a board along with him—concedes that the response to his work has been mixed. "Some people thought it was neat that I had another outlet for my energy," he says. "Other people thought I had too much time on my hands. Most people said, 'Well, we've never seen anything like that before.' "
Doc, neither have we.