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Death Has No Sting
Kenny Moore
September 20, 1993
Dr. George Sheehan, sage of the running boom, is writing his own finish to his final race
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September 20, 1993

Death Has No Sting

Dr. George Sheehan, sage of the running boom, is writing his own finish to his final race

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When you express the wish that Valvano had found some of Sheehan's apparent peace, had come to know the rightness of all things physical having an end, Sheehan chides you a little. "The man was a combatant, and an inspiring coach of mesomorphic combatants," he says. "Surely Jimmy found and became the person he was meant to be."

And so Sheehan, a man born to clarify our ideas, perseveres, still pricked by the need to go on. "I'm going to come up with something to possibly help people," he says. "I want to do a little more."

In reply, urging contentment, you quote Sheehan to Sheehan: "For Olympians, death has no sting. They have had the great initiation." Why not relax and enjoy his large and happy family?

In return, saying they must be his closing words of the phone call because he is weary, he quotes Epictetus, the Stoic: "Know, whenever the opportunity for glory and honor is presented, that is the Olympics. You must respond."

Yet that seems a little too stentorian for actual last words, so he asks, "Will you come visit?"

"I'll try. Of course I'll try. But I never know where I'm going to turn up."

"You don't know?" he chuckles. "What about me?"

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