Sports Gold medalist downhill skier Bill Johnson dead at 55

Discussion in 'The Howard Stern Show' started by MutteringJohn, Jan 22, 2016.

  1. MutteringJohn

    MutteringJohn Well-Known Member

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    Watched a documentary on this guy. He was 1984 Olympic Gold medalist in Sarajevo. He became a real celebrity and lived the good life for a while. He ended up dying in assisted living center and in poverty.

    Bill Johnson, the brash American who became the first U.S. skier to win an Olympic downhill title, has died after a long illness, the U.S. ski team said Friday. He was 55.

    Megan Harrod, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Alpine team, said Johnson died Thursday at an assisted living facility in Gresham, Oregon.

    Johnson's health had been on the decline for several years after a series of strokes.

    Johnson won the downhill at the 1984 Sarajevo Olympics, the first American to capture gold in Alpine skiing's marquee event. He was also the first American male to win an Olympic gold in any Alpine event.

    He became an iconic figure to many Americans by predicting he would win Olympic gold.

    They related to Billy — that brash, throw-it-in-your-face type attitude,' Phil Mahre, who won the Olympic slalom in 1984, said in 2012. 'When you tell people you're going to go do something and then you go out and back it up like in Sarajevo, it's pretty impressive.'

    Johnson tried to make a comeback ahead of the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics at the age of 40, but crashed in a downhill training run in 2001 at the U.S. championships at The Big Mountain near Whitefish, Montana. He sustained a traumatic brain injury that erased nearly a decade of memories. He had to learn how to walk, talk and eat again.

    Johnson made steady improvement over the years, even returning to the slopes for recreation. But his health deteriorated again because of strokes, and he spent his last years in the assisted living center near Portland.

    'It's really sad,' Lindsey Vonn, winner of the 2010 women's Olympic downhill title, said Friday. 'He's had a rough couple of years and it's been sad to watch him deteriorate like that. But you know when you're in a state like that I think it's a blessing sometimes. He was an incredible legend in our sport so I just hope he rests in peace and my condolences to his family.'

    Johnson, who was born in Los Angeles, grew up racing at Bogus Basin, Idaho, and Mt. Hood, Oregon.

    Caught stealing cars as a teenager, the judge gave him a choice: Attend ski school or head to jail. So he went to Mission Ridge Ski Academy in Washington, where he developed his talent.

    Johnson established himself on the global scene when he won the Lauberhorn downhill in Wengen, Switzerland, in 1984 in his second year on the World Cup circuit.

    A month later, Johnson went to Sarajevo and cockily predicted that he would win, annoying his European rivals. He came through, beating silver medalist Peter Mueller of Switzerland by 0.27 seconds.



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  2. Gomez

    Gomez Well-Known Member

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    Dude was baller, a fucking Boss.
     
  3. wigtropolis

    wigtropolis Well-Known Member

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    Could he hit a golf all 300 yards
     
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  4. MutteringJohn

    MutteringJohn Well-Known Member

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    If your an Olympic skier you get to bang snow bunnies and SI swimsuit models 24/7. You basically have access to the same women Leonardo DiCaprio hooks up with.
     
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  5. potroast

    potroast Well-Known Member

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    Crazy fast sport. 80 mph in what amounts to a controlled crash all the way down the mountain.
     
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  6. GaryPuppet

    GaryPuppet Well-Known Member

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    Is his gold medal available for the right price now?
     
  7. pickles3000

    pickles3000 Well-Known Member Banned User

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    [​IMG]
     
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  8. DinnerSocks

    DinnerSocks Well-Known Member Banned User

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    I remember seeing his doc. Wow, the end was the saddest thing I'd ever seen. I'm glad he's finally out of his misery. :rip:
     
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  9. Zendriveseven

    Zendriveseven Well-Known Member

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    I was working in the ski department of Herman's Sporting Goods when he won the gold. At one of our meetings they replayed his amazing downhill run to inspire us. Such a fluid skier and the run was perfection in motion.

    I must admit I had no idea he was in rough shape, not sure how I missed it all these years. Really sucks how badly he's struggled. RIP Bill
     
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  10. suckemnuckledus

    suckemnuckledus Well-Known Member

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    Who the fuck wants to play in the snow? That shit sucks!
     
  11. The Booey

    The Booey Well-Known Member

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    He looked like Jon Stewart.
     
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  12. Droog

    Droog Well-Known Member VIP

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    I can't even fathom going as fast as downhill skiers. When they go around bends and their skis are chattering, it's insane. You can't really comprehend just how fast they're going on television.
     
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  13. Zendriveseven

    Zendriveseven Well-Known Member

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    ... With a little bit of Matthew McConaughey thrown in there
     
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  14. Robert Higgins

    Robert Higgins Well-Known Member VIP

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  15. Ralph Kramden

    Ralph Kramden Active Member

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    I got that on tape, honey!!
     
  16. HorseFanNetwork

    HorseFanNetwork Well-Known Member

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  17. SouthernListen

    SouthernListen New phone who dis? VIP

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    After the Olympics, it's all downhill.
     
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  18. larry Darrel

    larry Darrel Well-Known Member

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    RIP. The documentary was good. I remember his Gold Medal win very well. The poor guy thought he had an ATM filled with a lifetime's worth of cash because of that one win, but it didn't happen.
     
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  19. tao guru

    tao guru New Member

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    55 huh, he really went downhill fast.
     
  20. Jayla

    Jayla Ou ai-je l'esprit? Gold

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    :crying: