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Ripleys Believe It Or Not Ripley's Believe It Or Not was a regular feature in newspapers for many decades. Its creator, Robert Ripley, hoped to be a professional baseball player but an arm injury ended that dream. Instead, Ripley decided to write about sports. He compiled some odd sports facts and presented them in cartoon form. Ripley intended to call it Champs & Chumps, but settled on Believe It Or Not so he could go beyond sports. His first cartoon panel premiered in the New York Globe on December 19, 1918. At one point, there were 80 million loyal readers of Believe It Or Not in daily newspapers. Much of Ripley's research was done by Norbert Pearlroth. For 52 years, Pearlroth spent 10 hours per day, six days a week in the New York Public Library searching for obscure facts and trivia for Ripley's cartoons!
Tags: Ripleys  Believe  It  Or  Not 
Added: 29th April 2008
Views: 1655
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Posted By: Lava1964
Tony Conigliaro Hard-luck ballplayer Tony Conigliaro of the Boston Red Sox was featured on the cover of this issue of Sports Illustrated from July 1970. Conigliaro was the favorite to win the American League's Rookie of the Year award in 1964, but he broke his arm in August. In 1965, at age 20, he led the AL in home runs with 32. Two years later, on Auugst 18, 1967, Conigliaro was hit in the face with a fastball thrown by Jack Hamilton of the Angels. The pitch broke Conigliaro's cheekbone and damaged his left retina. (The effects are shown in the SI cover photo.) The injury was so devastating that Conigliaro missed the entire 1968 season. He had good seasons in both 1969 and 1970, but lingering eye problems from his 1967 injury caused him to retire in 1971. Conigliaro attempted a brief comeback in 1975 only to retire again. In 1982, at age 37, he suffered a severe heart attack. Conigliaro was virtually in a vegetive state until his death in 1990 at age 45.
Tags: Tony  Conigliaro 
Added: 23rd June 2008
Views: 1523
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Posted By: Lava1964
First Automobile Fatality 1896 On August 17, 1896, Mrs. Bridget Driscoll, age 44, became the first recorded autombile fatality. She stepped off a curb in the Crystal Palace section of London, England and was struck by a demonstration car travelling 4 miles per hour driven by Arthur Edsel. (Really! That was his true name!) She was knocked to the ground and suffered a severe head injury which killed her. At the inquest following Mrs. Driscoll's untimely death, the cause was ruled to be an accident and Edsel was absolved of all blame. Coroner William Percy Morrison stated that he hoped such a tragic mishap would never happen again.
Tags: first  automobile  death 
Added: 14th July 2008
Views: 1970
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Posted By: Lava1964
Wilbur Wood SI Cover A friend recently asked me a great baseball trivia question: Which MLB pitcher holds the post-1900 record for most games started over two consecutive seasons? My gut reaction was it had to be someone in the first decade of the twentieth century. When he said it was set after 1970, I correctly guessed Wilbur Wood of the Chicago White Sox. Wood, pictured here on a 1973 Sports Illustrated cover, was a steady knuckleball hurler who started 49 games in 1972 and 48 in 1973 to set the record of 97 starts over two consecutive seasons! Wood's career pretty much ended in May 1976 when a line drive shattered his kneecap. After a long rehab session, Wood returned to baseball but was not nearly as skillful on the mound as he had been before the injury.
Tags: Wilbur  Wood  Sports  Illustrated  cover 
Added: 27th April 2009
Views: 1187
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Posted By: Lava1964
Bewitched Switches Darrins A great many TV sitcoms have experienced cast changes during their runs. None, however, was more startling to the average viewer than when the role of Darrin Stephens on Bewitched went suddenly from Dick York to Dick Sargent in 1969. York had portrayed Darrin since the series premiered in 1964. However, York had suffered a severe back injury while filming a movie in 1959. He became heavily dependent on pain killers for sleeping and getting through the day. By 1968 York's back injury was so crippling that he had to be written out of several episodes and/or the show's shooting schedule had to be changed to accommodate his absences. Often, when York was able to work, his scenes were structured so he could lie down on a couch or a bed. Finally in January 1969 he passed out during a taping and had to be rushed to a hospital. During York's hospitalization, producer William Asher asked York if he wanted out of the show. York knew he couldn't continue so he reluctantly agreed. He was replaced by the much taller Dick Sargent who played a more assertive version of Darrin. How did the show account for the dramatic change in appearance of its leading male character? One idea was to have Darrin the victim of a spell that made him grow. Eventually it was decided that nothing would be said; Sargent just assumed York's old role without explanation. Sargent played Darrin until the show's run ended in 1972. Bewitched fans constantly debate which actor played Darrin better. Sadly, York fell on hard times after leaving the series. Bad investments drained his savings. He died in poverty in 1992.
Tags: Bewitched  two  Darrins 
Added: 21st October 2009
Views: 1604
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Posted By: Lava1964
NHL Fatality Bill Masterton In January 1968 Bill Masterton of the Minnesota North Stars became only player in the long history of the National Hockey League to die as a result of an on-ice injury. Here's his story.
Tags: NHL  Bill  Masteron  fatality 
Added: 11th February 2009
Views: 2538
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Posted By: Lava1964
Tracy Austin SI Cover 1976 Thirteen-year-old tennis prodigy Tracy Austin graced this 1976 cover of Sports Illustrated. Austin had an injury-shortened career. Still she twice won the U.S. Open singles title (in 1979 and 1981) before she was 19 years old.
Tags: Tracy  Austin  tennis  SI  cover 
Added: 13th July 2009
Views: 1862
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Posted By: Lava1964
Raymond Johnson Chapman Grave Raymond Johnson Chapman (January 15, 1891 August 17, 1920) was an American baseball player, spending his entire career as a shortstop for Cleveland. He is the second of only two Major League Baseball players to have died as a result of an injury received in a game. Chapman was hit in the head by a pitch thrown by Yankees pitcher Carl Mays. His death led Major League Baseball to establish a rule requiring umpires to replace the ball whenever it became dirty. His death was partially the reason MLB banned the spitball after the season.
Tags: Raymond  Johnson  Chapman  Grave  baseball  player    Yankees  pitcher  Carl  Mays  shortstop  for  Cleveland  spitball 
Added: 31st October 2009
Views: 1465
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Posted By: Cliffy
Bryce Florie Injury On September 8, 2000, in a game Red-Sox Yankees televised by ESPN, Boston pitcher Bryce Florie was hit in the face with a line drive. He suffered several fractures and damaged vision. The injury ended his 2000 season. He pitched only seven games for Boston in 2001 before he was released. He lingered in the low minor leagues until 2007.
Tags: baseball  Bryce  Florie  injury 
Added: 25th April 2010
Views: 3117
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Posted By: Lava1964
Ray Combs The original ABC version of Family Feud was hosted by Richard Dawson from 1976 through 1985. Three years later the game show returned to the air on CBS (and then syndication) with Ray Combs as its host. Combs was originally a comedian who was successful as a warm-up act for studio audiences at TV tapings. His favorable reputation once got him a stand-up gig on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson. When Family Feud was resurrected, Combs was inevitably compared to Richard Dawson--usually unfavorably. When Mark Goodson, Family Feud's creator, died in 1993, his son took control of the show. With ratings noticeably falling, it was announced that Combs would be replaced by old favorite Richard Dawson in 1994. At the end of the final Family Feud that Combs hosted, he left the stage immediately after he said goodbye--instead of mingling with the competing families, as was the custom. Combs never recovered from losing the show. A car accident caused a spinal injury that put him in constant pain. The comedy clubs he owned closed; he suffered major financial losses and lost his home. His wife of 18 years left him. Displying suicidal tendencies, Combs was hospitalized shortly after his 40th birthday. Not long after his release, police were called to Combs' home which he was violently trashing. He was taken to a mental institution. A short time later Combs committed suicide by hanging himself with his bed linen. In a weird coincidence, Richard Dawson died 16 years to the day that Ray Combs did.
Tags: Ray  Combs  suicide  game  show  host 
Added: 24th July 2010
Views: 6509
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Posted By: Lava1964

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