James Morrison and Hilaree Nelson were brought together by death and loss but united in love — for each other, for self challenge, and for the mountains — in their attempt to become the first adventurers to summit Lhotse and ski down.
Jake Plummer never went to Tampa Bay, of course, just as he never offered his services to any other NFL team. Upon retiring in March 2007, he held a press conference at the Denver Athletic Club. Grasping a lectern, he told a crowd of reporters that he was “running away from the game” but not in “fear or fright.” He credited his teammates for his success, invoked his friend Pat Tillman and pointed to his chest and promised that “there will not be a jersey with an NFL patch here.” He said he was excited to move on and “take on new challenges,” because “life is grand, life is exciting.” Then, without taking questions, Plummer bid goodbye and walked down the hall to play a doubles handball match with his brother Eric.
After a promising junior season as a coxswain at Cal, she learned she was in the late stages of cancer. The next year was her best. “When she asked her doctors about rejoining the team, they looked at her as if she were crazy. Crew? She’d need all her strength just to make it through each day. Jill didn’t care. She told her mom she saw cancer as ‘just another thing on my plate.’ Besides, she’d had three goals for the better part of her adult life: to graduate from Cal, to cox the first boat and to win nationals. She saw no reason to change them.”
In 1971 a team from a tiny high school in the Midwest with an unorthodox coach, whose job was saved by his players’ parents, went all the way to the state final. Hoosiers, anyone?