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Hell of a story; where did it come from?

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by slappy4428, Jun 16, 2009.

  1. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    AP story on an Ohio State shotputter and the effects on him after he hit someone with the shot at a meet and killed him.

    Who wrote the original? Found it in several places on the web, but none with a byline or attribution. Awesome job...


    COLUMBUS, Ohio — The first time Patrick Whalen saw Paul Suzuki it was already too late.

    The 13.2-pound shot put had left the right hand of the barrel-chested Buckeye and started on its trajectory into the southern California sky.

    No prayers could alter its three-second flight. No shouts of warning could alert the 77-year-old track official.

    Long ago, coaches had taught Whalen to be careful throwing track-and-field implements used in ancient times as instruments of war. On this day, he had followed proper etiquette, scanning the V-shaped shot-put sector before launching the metal ball.

    What he couldn't account for, however, was the generosity of a longtime volunteer who picked the worst moment to cross the range to assist a fellow official.

    "Nobody blamed me, but all I could think about was this one official, this one voice from behind me yelling, 'Oh, no, what have you done?'" Whalen said.

    Four years ago, on a sun-baked afternoon in Carson, Calif., a shot put hurled in a practice session of a junior national track meet changed the lives of two families.

    It also reduced a gregarious Ohio State freshman to a fragile 19-year-old haunted by memories and prone to bouts of depression.
  2. mustangj17

    mustangj17 Active Member

    I can't help you with this slap but this story reminds me of a meet I attended about 10 years ago. Spectator got clunked in the head with a hammer during the hammer throw at an EMU track meet. Guy survived too. Scary sight.
  3. rtse11

    rtse11 Member

    Tom Reed of The Columbus Dispatch is the author.
  4. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    Great job by Reed.
  5. pseudo

    pseudo Active Member

    Link to the original story:
  6. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    Thanks for posting. Good stuff.
  7. awesome stuff
  8. albert77

    albert77 Well-Known Member

    I remember about 20-25 years ago, a writer in California was killed when he was struck by a javelin. I feel for this young man.
  9. Andy _ Kent

    Andy _ Kent Member

    Why wasn't this bylined in the Toledo Blade? I'm confused.
  10. farmerjerome

    farmerjerome Active Member

    What a great read. I wonder if the daughter ever contacted him.
  11. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    Maybe AP didn't send it with Reed's byline.
  12. Andy _ Kent

    Andy _ Kent Member

    An involved feature like that? That's blasphemous. If so, I hope it was just an unfortunate oversight.
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