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Hal Connolly reports death of Parry O'Brien

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  • Hal Connolly reports death of Parry O'Brien

    On "The Ring":

    http://www.effortlessthrow.org/cgi-b...20070422004645

  • #2
    Hard to believe Parry O'Brien is gone. I think he turned 75 last January. What a great competitor. He will be missed.

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    • #3
      He was absolutely a giant in the sport (and I'm not referring to his physical size). He transformed his event and also dominated it.

      R.I.P.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by tandfman
        He was absolutely a giant in the sport (and I'm not referring to his physical size). He transformed his event and also dominated it.

        R.I.P.
        The best ever.
        "A beautiful theory killed by an ugly fact."
        by Thomas Henry Huxley

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        • #5
          I always assumed he was much older than that. Anyway my condolences to his next of kin.

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          • #6
            OK, I hate to be the curmudgeon around here, and mean no disrespect to Parry O’Brien, but did anyone else here feel that Connolly was being more than a little hyperbolic and out of place in comparing the death of O’Brien to the US deaths in Iraq & Afghanistan, and the Virginia Tech victims?

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            • #7
              Parry was the most immense talent the event has ever seen, bar none, the sport owes him greatly. I pray for his family in this time of loss.
              ... nothing really ever changes my friend, new lines for old, new lines for old.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by bad hammy
                OK, I hate to be the curmudgeon around here, and mean no disrespect to Parry O’Brien, but did anyone else here feel that Connolly was being more than a little hyperbolic and out of place in comparing the death of O’Brien to the US deaths in Iraq & Afghanistan, and the Virginia Tech victims?
                Harold was a teammate of Parry's and obviously a friend. I got no sense from what he wrote that he felt any disrespect for the Blacksburg victims or for our troops. To the contrary, it is noteworthy, in a good way, that on a day when he is personally mourning Parry's loss, he also has these others on his mind.

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                • #9
                  I remember as a teenager watching O'Brien put the shot and then throw the discus at the all-comers meets at Arroyo H.S. in El Monte, California.

                  And, I remember his competitive spirit. When Dallas Long began surpassing him I believe, even at that late date in his career, he improved his PR a foot or more in responding to the challenge!

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                  • #10
                    The greatest there ever was.

                    10 WRs in the SP (first in 1953 and last in 1959)

                    Ranked no 1 in the world 7 times. 15 years in the top 10. And Discus. Ranked in the top 10 for ten years including no 1 in 1957.
                    One of my all time heroes in any sport.

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                    • #11

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                      • #12
                        He developed the O'Brien style of throwing. They used to stand in the ring with their sides facing the way they were going to throw and then leap across the ring. O'Brien changed it to facing the back, and the style offered a better mechanical torque to the putt. I learned the style in HS in the 50's, and it was quite difficult to master. He was the first over 60' and dominated the event as no-one else has. I was interested to see he'd switched to swimming, as that's what I'm thinking of competing in as a Senior (the knees being shot! pardon the pun.)

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                        • #13
                          I don't remember that Time magazine cover, but what a crappy job the artist did.

                          Parry O'Brien was an incredibly handsome guy.
                          "Who's Kidding Who?"

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                          • #14
                            Just heard an interview piece with Ron Allice about O'Brien on NPR. It isn't available online yet but will be at http://www.npr.org/templates/story/stor ... Id=9783168 around 19:30 ET

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                            • #15
                              My best Parry O'Brien story was related by me here a few years ago, but I will repeat it......


                              In about 1963, there used to be weekly summer All Comers T & F meets at Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx, NY City; very low key affairs.

                              One week when I had taken the LIRR into Penn Station, and then the Broadway Line subway to the end of the line at 242nd Street, to compete in the HJ, some Los Angeles banker, in NYC on business, hears about this little rinky dinky meet, and shows up at the last minute, borrows some shoes, singlet and shorts, and then throws about 62 feet. Well for sure, you can guess who !

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