Will Applaud Romney's Rescue of 2002 Winter Games
TAMPA, Fla., Aug. 24, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The story of how Mitt Romney put his life on hold to rescue the scandal-ridden 2002 Winter Olympic Games will be told by a number of America's Olympians during next week's Republican Convention.
"A dozen of America's elite Olympic stars will join us at the Tampa Bay Times Forum to pass the torch of leadership to Governor Romney," Republican National Chairman Reince Priebus said in making the announcement. "Mitt Romney selflessly and skillfully saved our country from international embarrassment, and these Olympians will be here to offer their thanks."
Thursday will feature a cavalcade of Olympic celebrities, including three who will address the convention on what is expected to be its most heavily-watched night:
Michael Eruzione was the captain of the 1980 U.S. Olympic team that defeated the Soviet Union in one of the Olympic Games' most uplifting moments ever – a game remembered more than two decades later as "The Miracle on Ice." Eruzione's winning goal in that game has become one of the most played video highlights in American sports, and was voted the greatest highlight of all time by ESPN viewers in March, 2008. Despite receiving contract offers from the New York Rangers, Eruzione said he'd reached the pinnacle of achievement already and became a broadcaster at Rangers and New Jersey Devils games and for NHL games on USA Network and "The NHL" on Fox. He's provided commentary on five Olympic Games for both ABC and CBS.
Derek Parra is the first-ever Mexican-American to bring home the gold medal in the Olympic Winter Games, winning gold in the 1,500 meter speed skating at the 2002 Winter Games. A San Bernardino native, his interest in speed skating began with roller skating: he excelled at the sport, becoming the most decorated athlete in its history, a two-time World Champion and record holder and winner of 18 individual gold medals. He switched to speed skating to pursue the one dream that had eluded him -- Olympic Gold.
Kim Rhode, the co-host of the Outdoor Channel's Step Outside program, is the only American Olympian to win five medals in an individual event in five consecutive Olympic Games. She's the most successful female shooter at the Olympics, the only triple Olympic Champion and the only woman to have won two gold medals for Double Trap. Most recently, she brought home gold in skeet shooting at the 2012 Summer Games in London, equaling the world record of 99 out of 100 clays. When double trap was eliminated from the Olympic Games, she set a new world record in skeet at the 2007 world cup competitions, going on to win the silver at the 2008 Summer Olympics in women's skeet.
Other Olympians attending the Republican Convention include:
Andy Gabel, Speed Skating, 1988, 1992, 1994, 1998
Rowdy Gaines, Swimming, 1984
Dan Jansen, Speed Skating, 1984, 1988, 1992, 1994
Lea Ann Parsley, Skeleton, 2002
Noelle Pikus-Pace, Skeleton, 2010
Jean Racine Prahm, Bobsled, 2002, 2006
Bill Schuffenhauer, Bobsled, 2002, 2006, 2010
Jimmy Shea, Skeleton, 2002
About the 2012 Republican National Convention
The 2012 Republican National Convention will be held at the Tampa Bay Times Forum August 27-30, 2012. Nearly 50,000 visitors are expected to come to the Tampa Bay area for the event, including delegates, alternate delegates, media and other guests. For more information about the 2012 Republican National Convention, become part of the virtual convention at www.ConventionWithoutWalls.com, visit our website www.GOPConvention2012.com and check out our official blog, Conventional Wisdom, at www.gopconvention2012.com/blog/.
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SOURCE 2012 Republican National Convention