December 3, 2012 |
The afternoon of October 20, 1981, was sunny and breezy, 60 degrees at Montgomery County Community College. The teenager out there running was a future two-time Olympic 800-meter medalist - the best middle-distance runner this area has ever produced. This 17-year-old had a resting heart rate that day of 62. Her left foot hurt her sometimes in the front "near the toes," but only when she walked, not running. (Could it have been her Adidas LA trainers?) This teenage girl ran eight miles preparing for the Suburban League cross-country championship meet two days later.
June 5, 2010 |
It was a simple question. One that Sara Sargent immediately answered. Moments after completing her final race at the PIAA state track and field championships, the Pennsbury freshman was asked to identify the one person she would like to meet. "Kim Gallagher!" Sargent answered on the Seth Grove Stadium infield at Shippensburg University. "If I could meet one person, it definitely would be her. " The 15-year-old was well aware that Gallagher, a two-time Olympian and former Upper Dublin standout, died of a stroke in 2002.
June 4, 2010 |
It was a simple question. One that Sara Sargent immediately answered. Moments after completing her final race at the PIAA state track and field championships, the Pennsbury freshman was asked the one person she would like to meet. "Kim Gallagher!" Sargent answered on the Seth Grove Stadium infield at Shippensburg University. "If I could meet one person, it definitely would be her. " The 15-year-old was well aware that Gallagher, a two-time Olympian and former Upper Dublin standout, died of a stroke in 2002.
November 20, 2002 |
Kim Gallagher, the willowy and precocious high school middle-distance runner who went on to win medals in both the 1984 and 1988 Olympic Games, died of a stroke Monday afternoon at Roxborough Memorial Hospital. She was 38. The predisposing cause of death was stomach cancer, which was diagnosed in 1995. It was not made public until a year later, because, friends said, Ms. Gallagher did not want any unsolicited sympathy. Ms. Gallagher, who lived in Oreland, Montgomery County, suffered the first of two strokes in August.
May 4, 2000 |
It was supposed to be a day to honor current members of the Ambler Olympic Club, and to dedicate the new track and field facility at Gwynedd Mercy Academy. It was all of that, but it also turned out to be a day to honor Larry Wilson, the coach of the cross-country and track programs at Gwynedd Mercy for 23 years, the co-founder of the Ambler club 34 years ago, and the man after whom the track has been named. The small bleachers on one side of the track were filled Sunday, mostly with Wilson family members.
January 2, 1996 |
While winning races all those years, Kim Gallagher also was winning hearts. Supporters rallied around the 1982 Upper Dublin High graduate through a spectacular track and field career that was characterized by courage, grace and dignity, and they are rallying around her now as she fights terminal stomach cancer with the same admirable qualities. "You hope people love you, and I felt they always did love me," Gallagher said in a recent telephone conversation from her home in Los Angeles.
October 6, 1988 |
The thrill of victory. The agony of defeat. Those lines, made famous by ABC's Wide World of Sports, would aptly apply to David Berkoff, Kim Gallagher and David Wharton, the three area athletes who competed in the Games of the 24th Olympiad in Seoul, South Korea. All three had triumphant moments, much like the frequently televised scene where the United States wins the gold medal in hockey at the 1980 Olympic Games in Lake Placid, N.Y. But all three also experienced a big loss, though possibly not as bad as the now-infamous ski jumper who tumbles down and off the ski jump at the beginning of every Wide World of Sports show.
September 18, 1988 |
"I learned that nothing good comes fast. That's what came out of this. " - Kim Gallagher They decided to meet at the airport. They decided to exchange favorite earrings. They decided that would bring good luck to Kim Gallagher. Before she flew from Los Angeles to Indianapolis in July to participate in the U.S. Olympic track and field trials, Gallagher handed a diamond-and-pearl earring to her best friend, Roberta Bell. Then Bell gave Gallagher a seed- pearl earring. They talked on the telephone every day when Gallagher was in Indianapolis, Bell said.
September 4, 1988 |
Kim Gallagher of Ambler braved 100-degree temperatures yesterday and tuned up for Seoul with a personal-best effort in the 1,500 meters during a pre- Olympic meet in Los Angeles. Gallagher, a 1984 silver medalist who will compete in the 800 and 1,500 meters at the Olympics, clocked 4 minutes, 3.29 seconds in the 1,500 on the sizzling track at UCLA's Drake Stadium. The time improved on her previous best of 4:05.41. Gallagher, who now trains in Los Angeles, set her sights on Mary Decker Slaney's American mark of 3:57.
July 21, 1988 |
These have not been three of the most memorable years in the running career of Kim Gallagher, a 1984 Olympic silver medalist: She spent more time in a doctor's office than the cast and crew of St. Elsewhere. "I'm not sick anymore," said Gallagher, 24, a 1982 Upper Dublin graduate who has polycystic ovaries. "I'm not in my doctor's office anymore. That's why I'm back. " Back, that is, on track toward another Olympic medal. At the U.S. Olympic Trials in Indianapolis on Monday, Gallagher qualified for the Olympics in Seoul, South Korea, in September by winning the 800 meters in 1 minute, 58.01 seconds - the fifth-fastest time for an American woman.