|"If you can win in adversity,
you can win anywhere!"
-- Jeff Blatnick
|While his name may not immediately ring a bell, his moment is one we'll remember forever - the big, burly Greco-Roman wrestler dropping to his knees with his hands together in thanks for winning the Gold Medal at the 1984 Summer Olympic Games. And, in the moments that followed, giving an emotional television interview in which he proclaimed to the world, through tears of joy:"I'm a happy dude!"
His emotions were running high for more reasons than winning Olympic Gold. Just two years earlier Jeff was diagnosed with Hodgkin's disease, a form of cancer that attacks the spleen and lymph nodes. After surgery and a series of daily radiation treatments, the cancer was in remission and he resumed training.
The dramatic television interview the world saw immediately after his medal-winning bout brought Jeff's private struggles to the public eye. And, shortly after winning the gold, his U.S. teammates elected Blatnick to carry the flag at the Closing Ceremonies of the L.A. Games - an honor Jeff will never forget.
As Sports Illustrated Publisher Dave Long states:
"Gold Medal stories are always fascinating, but because of the other battles he's fought, Jeff's was something special. And we know that everyone who heard him speak was inspired by what he had to say!"
Jeffrey C. Blatnick
PO Box 462
Burnt Hills, NY 12027