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Friday, May 6, 2022

Famous & 65

Look who's turning 65 this month

Find out which celebrities are turning 65 this month!

Image Source: Wikipedia

May 8 - Bill Cowher, linebacker, football coach, sports analyst

Bill Cowher was a team captain, linebacker, and MVP in his senior year playing football for NC State University. However, he had an unremarkable career in the NFL, a circumstance he attributes to helping him become an extraordinary coach. He primarily played special teams during his time on the field and worked hard for his spot on the roster. Cowher thinks such players make better coaches than the guys who headlined and had a lot of success. 

Talk about success…Cowher joined the Pittsburgh Steelers as head coach in 1992 and retired at the end of the 2006 season. In that time, the team won eight division championships, two AFC Championship Games, and a Super Bowl. This amazing record earned Cowher a spot in the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2020.

Cowher has seen his share of tragedy; his first wife, Kaye, died from skin cancer in 2010. The couple’s three daughters went on to attend college, and two married pro athletes. In 2014, Cowher married Veronica Stigeler. Four years later, the couple moved to New York. 

Cowher has said that life is not about what you accomplish, but rather the lives you touch along the way. He can be proud that nine of his assistant coaches went on to become head coaches in either the NFL or NCAA, and one of his players, Mike Vrabel, is now the head coach of the Tennessee Titans.

Cowher continues to work as a sports analyst on The NFL Today.


Image Source: Wikipedia

May 16 - Joan Benoit Samuelson, long-distance runner

One of America’s greatest distance runners, Joan Benoit Samuelson has had a long career defined by records, any one of which serve to preserve her place in history. She was the first Olympic Games women’s marathon champion, triumphing at the 1984 Los Angeles Summer Olympics. She has put down times that have stayed at the top of the record books for decades, winning the Chicago Marathon women’s division in 1985 with a time that held the record for 32 years. Her run in the 1979 Boston Marathon was the fastest time achieved by an American woman for the following 28 years. 

Oh, and about those Olympic trials for the 1984 Games? Samuelson hurt her knee quite severely, and it looked like she was out. She had to undergo arthroscopic surgery just 17 days before the trials were scheduled. It would be impossible to recover from that and run well for two and a half hours, wouldn’t anyone assume? But Samuelson managed to beat her closest rival by 30 seconds to secure her place at the Games, where a gold medal was soon hanging from her neck.

Perhaps what earns Samuelson a mention in a blog dedicated to seniors is her remarkable performance in the 2019 Boston Marathon. Forty years after her first victory there, with her son and daughter running with her, she achieved her goal of running a time within 40 minutes of her winning time in 1989. In fact, she came within 30 minutes of her record time! 

Samuelson currently lives in her home state of Maine, where she coaches women’s cross country and long-distance runners. The high school athletic field is named the Joan Benoit Samuelson Track and Field. She also gives motivational speeches and is a sports commentator. 

Image Source: Wikipedia

May 22 - Lisa Murkowski, US Senator from Alaska

Lisa Murkowski has held a senate seat for her home state of Alaska since 2002, making her the senior senator. A Republican, she is considered a moderate and voted with Democrats to convict the former president of incitement of insurrection in his second impeachment trial. The Alaska Republican Party censured her for her vote.

Murkowski’s father, Frank, is a former US Senator and governor of Alaska. He appointed Lisa to the Senate in 2002 when he resigned his seat to become governor of the state. While the move raised many eyebrows, his daughter ran for and won a complete term in 2004, proving she was capable on her own merits. And in 2010, Murkowski became only the second US senator to win by write-in, defeating both the Democrat and a Tea Party candidate.

She has become consequential on the political scene, serving as chair of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee for six years and as vice-chair of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee since 2021. She worked as an attorney before starting her career in government.


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