INDIANAPOLIS, Ind., Feb. 3, 2009 — 2004 Olympic all-around champion Carly Patterson of Allen, Texas (women), 2004 Olympian Mary Sanders of Toronto, Ont. (rhythmic gymnastics), 2000 Olympian Steve McCain of Los Angeles (men) and 1996 Olympian John Macready of Knoxville, Tenn. (men), are among the 2009 class of inductees for the USA Gymnastics Hall of Fame that USA Gymnastics announced today. The class also includes: two-time world acrobatic gymnastics champions Shenea Booth and Arthur Davis of San Diego, Calif.; trampoline and tumbling coach and judge Pat Wilson Henderson of Bloomington, Minn., lifetime achievement; Temple University head coach Fred Turoff of Philadelphia, coach; trampolinist James Yongue of Breaux Bridge, La.; and the 1999 Gold- Medal Men’s Double Mini-trampoline World Championships Team.
“We are proud to recognize the 2009 inductees for their accomplishments and contributions to gymnastics,” said Steve Penny, president of USA Gymnastics. “The rich history of USA Gymnastics is reflected by those inducted into this prestigious group. Congratulations to each and every one of our honorees.”
The members of the 1999 U.S. Men’s Double Mini-trampoline World Championships Team were: Karl Heger of Rockford, Ill.; Mark Griffith of Orlando, Fla.; Byron Smith of Lubbock, Texas; and Ryan Weston of Orlando. Brief biographies of all of the inductees are included below.
The 2009 USA Gymnastics Hall of Fame luncheon and induction ceremony is scheduled for Friday, Aug. 14, as part of the USA Gymnastics National Congress and Trade Show in Dallas, which is held in conjunction with the 2009 Visa Championships. Ticket and other information on the luncheon and induction ceremony will be available at www.usa-gymnastics.org.
The USA Gymnastics Hall of Fame inducted its first class in 1959. Based in Indianapolis, USA Gymnastics is the national governing body for gymnastics in the United States. Its mission is to encourage participation and the pursuit of excellence in the sport. Its disciplines include men’s and women’s artistic gymnastics, rhythmic gymnastics, trampoline and tumbling, and acrobatic gymnastics.
|1999 U.S. World Championships Team for men’s double mini-trampoline. The U.S. World Championships Team for men’s double mini-trampoline claimed the double-mini team world title at the 1999 World Championships in Sun City, South Africa. The members of the team were: Karl Heger of Rockford, Ill.; Mark Griffith of Orlando; Byron Smith of Lubbock, Texas; and Ryan Weston of Orlando. Heger, who now works for the FBI, was inducted into the USA Gymnastics Hall of Fame in 2007 as an individual member. He was a member of the U.S. Trampoline Team for 22 years and won 18 national titles. He competed in 11 World Championships, winning team gold medals in double mini-trampoline in 1988 and 1999, and he also won synchronized trampoline at the 1991 World Games. Griffith is the 2000 U.S. trampoline champion and earned U.S. titles in double mini-trampoline in 1996 and 1999. In addition to his team gold medal at the 1999 World Championships, Griffith finished seventh in double mini. Smith, now a coach at Air Extreme in Lubbock, is a two-time U.S. synchronized trampoline champion (1998 and 2000). Weston, the 2000 U.S. Olympic Team alternate, is an eight-time U.S. trampoline champion (1996-99, 2001-04) and a four-time U.S. synchronized trampoline champion (1999, 2003-05). Griffith and Weston are both currently performing in a Cirque du Soleil show in Orlando.|
|Shenea Booth and Arthur Davis, acrobatic gymnastics. Davis and Booth became the first U.S. acrobatic gymnastics world champions in the mixed pairs’ event at the 2002 World Championships, and then became the first U.S. acro athletes to repeat as world champions when they defended their title in 2004. To date, they are the only U.S. acrobatic team to win a world title. They also were three-time U.S. champions (2002-04) and acrobatic gymnastics’ Athletes of the Year in 2003-04. The duo was awarded the Glen Sundby Award for Outstanding Pair/Group Performance in 2003-04 and earned awards for the Most Difficult Skill in 2002 and 2004. Booth was on the national team for seven years, and Davis was on the national squad for nine years. Since retiring from competition in 2004, Booth and Davis have been performing as "Realis." Together, they are co-owners of Realis Co. Inc., and during the last four years, they have performed in more than 20 countries around the world. In addition, they advanced to the final round of "America’s Got Talent," and have made guest appearances on "Dancing With The Stars," "So You Think You Can Dance" Australia, "Today" and three ice skating/gymnastics events. They also produced, wrote, and starred in their own dinner show in Hollywood, Calif., where they are based. Booth and Davis do private engagements and performances around the world.|
|John Macready, men’s gymnastics. Macready, who began in gymnastics when he was just five years old, was a 1996 Olympian and a member of the 1995 and 1997 World Championship Teams. He was the youngest member of the 1996 U.S. Men’s Olympic Gymnastics’ Team, which placed fifth for the USA’s best finish since 1984. Macready was third in the all-around at the 1996 U.S. Olympic Trials and 1996 Coca-Cola National Championships, where he was also second on rings and third on both vault and high bar. Since retiring from competitive gymnastics in 2000, Macready is a co-owner of Flipfest, a gymnastics camp in Knoxville, Tenn., as well as a motivational speaker and works as the in-house emcee at USA Gymnastics premier events. He is married and has two children.|
|Steve McCain, men’s gymnastics. McCain was a member of the men’s 2000 U.S. Olympic Team and was an alternate on the 2004 Olympic squad. He was a member of the U.S. men’s team that won the team silver medal at the 2001 World Championships, as well as the squads for the 1994, 1996 and 1999 World Championships. In addition to the team silver medal, he finished fourth in the floor exercise and was an all-around finalist at the 2001 World Championships. The men’s team finished fifth at the 2000 Olympic Games and the 1999 World Championships. McCain was third on pommel horse at the 2004 U.S. Visa Championships; third on high bar at the 2003 U.S. Championships; third in the all-around and parallel bars (tie) at the 2001 U.S. Championships; and fourth in the all-around at the 2000 John Hancock U.S. Gymnastics Championships and the 2000 U.S. Olympic Trials. A native of Houston, McCain currently lives in Los Angeles. A graduate of UCLA, McCain maintains a gymnastics website, "American Gymnast," with former national team member Jay Thornton.|
|Carly Patterson, women’s gymnastics. In 2004, Patterson became the first U.S. woman to win the Olympic all-around gold medal since Mary Lou Retton in 1984. She also claimed team and balance beam silver medals at the 2004 Olympic Games. At the 2003 World Championships, Patterson earned gold and silver medals, respectively, in the team and all-around events. She won U.S. titles in the all-around (tie) and floor exercise in 2004, and she was the 2002 U.S. junior all-around champion. Among the awards Patterson received in 2004 are: USA Gymnastics Co-Athlete of the Year, U.S. Olympic Committee SportsWoman of the Year and U.S. Sports Academy Female Athlete of the Year. In 2003, Patterson and her World Championships teammates were named the USOC’s Team of the Year. Patterson trained at WOGA in Plano, Texas, and was a member of the junior national team from 2000-03 and the senior national team from 2004-05. Patterson currently lives in Allen, Texas, and is pursuing a singing career. In 2006, she appeared on FOX’s television show Celebrity Duets. Her second single will be released in February 2009 and her CD will debut in April 2009.|
|Mary Sanders, rhythmic gymnastics. Sanders, who grew up in Toronto, Ont., represented the USA in the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Greece, where she finished 15th in the all-around. In 2004, she won the all-around and all four individual event titles at the Pacific Alliance Championships and finished ninth in the all-around at the Athens Olympic Test Event. Sanders also won the all-around at the 2004 U.S. Olympic Team Trials. In 2003, she advanced to the finals in the all-around (10th), hoop (7th) and clubs (7th) at the World Championships. Earlier that year, Sanders was the all-around gold medalist at the Pan American Games. Sanders was the U.S. all-around champion from 2002-04. Her U.S. individual event titles were: ball and hoop, 2002-04; clubs, 2002-03; ribbon, 2003; and rope, 2002. She graduated from York Mills Collegiate Institute in May 2002. She trained at Ritmika and was coached by Mimi Masleva. A dual citizen of the United States and Canada, she competed for Canada from 2001-02. After retiring from competitive gymnastics, Sanders worked for Cirque du Soleil.|
|Fred Turoff, men’s gymnastics coach. Turoff graduated from Temple University in 1969 and went on to a coaching career that has spanned more than three decades. Turoff has coached 16 EIGL/ECAC title teams. He served as a member of the coaching staff at many international events, including the 1979 World Championships, 1991 World University Games and Pan American Games, 1992 Olympic Games, 1994 World Championships, and the 1996 Pacific Alliance Championships. His numerous awards, honors and distinctions for his service include the Frank Cumiskey Award, Special Service Award (NACGC), the Honor Coach Award, and NCAA Eastern Region Coach of the Year (nine times). He is a former chair of the Hall of Fame Selection Committee and is a past president of the USECA for men’s gymnastics. In addition to coaching, Turoff is an author and a nationally and internationally certified judge. He completed his Master of Education in biomechanics in August 1991. He is married with one child.|
James “Jimmy” Yongue, trampoline. Yongue, who lives in Breaux Bridge, La., won the bronze medal in synchronized trampoline at the 1968 World Championships and was the North American champion in 1964-65. He was the AAU national champion in 1965 and was the silver medalist in 1964 and 1967-69. Despite two interruptions in his career due to injuries, he competed in at least 13 international competitions, including a sixth-place finish at the 1965 World Championships. Yongue also competed in the 1967 and 1968 World Championships, where he placed eighth and 10th, respectively. At the AAU Nationals, he also finished third in trampoline in 1966 and in synchronized trampoline in 1969. Yongue attended the University of Southwest Louisiana from 1966- 70. After retiring from competition, he went on to coach for many years, including the U.S. team at the 1972 World Championships and for three other international events. He also coached several national AAU champions, including Stuart Ransom, Chris Eilertsen, Charlie Watkins, Jim Cartledge, Ann Thompson and Mason Koffman. He currently coaches at Acadiana Gymnastics.
Pat Wilson Henderson, Lifetime Achievement (trampoline and tumbling coach and Brevet judge). A trampoline and tumbling judge from 1971 through the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Greece, Henderson has represented the USA in approximately 30 countries as a coach, judge and teacher. She is a three-time recipient of the Outstanding Coach of the Year award and Women in Sport award. Henderson opened her first gymnastics facility in 1976 in Tulsa, Okla., and opened Minnesota Twisters in 1984. From 1974 to present, she has had a national qualifier every year, and many of her trampolinists were members of the national team and earned individual titles. Henderson has also produced international competitors – a world age-group medalist, world team members, one world team bronze medalist, two world team gold medalists, and the 2004 Olympic Team alternate. She has been a member of the USA coaching staff, as well as a U.S. World Championships team coach. From 2001-04 Henderson was a member of the FIG Trampoline Technical Committee and received the FIG Silver Recognition in 2005 for her dedication and service. Henderson received her degree from Metropolitan State University in 1978. The mother of two resides in Bloomington, Minn.