Mountain Views News     Logo: MVNews     Saturday, August 4, 2012

MVNews this week:  Page 19



 Mountain Views News Saturday August 4, 2012 

BEFORE THE OLYMPICS.....El Monte’s Kim Rhode 

By Joan Schmidt

Congratulations Kim Rhode! Monrovia resident, Kim Rhode, 
won an Olympic gold medal (above) in Women’s Skeet 
Shooting last Friday, making her the first American to win a 
medal in five consecutive Olympic Games. It’s an amazing 
feat that is a testament to dedication, focus and commitment. 
This story was submitted by Joan Schmidt prior to Rhode’s 
amazing win! Photo courtesy AP

 Kim Rhode is a current resident of Monrovia but she does 
call herself, an “El Monte Girl”- that’s where she was born 
and raised. Her parents still live in El Monte. Her grandfather 
graduated from El Monte High School and both Kim and her 
dad graduated from Arroyo High School. (She also attended 
Cherry Lee and Durfee Schools)

 I met Kim MANY years ago- back in 1996 when an 
awesome seventeen-year-old received a gold medal in trap! 
She came to our Route 66 Parade in Duarte along with Dr. 
Tommy Lee and Rafer Johnson. Mary Barrow Sommerlott 
always finds AWESOME Parade Grand Marshalls, and that 
year it was honoring Olympian Gold Winners! In the next 
three Olympics, Kim also 
earned medals. In 2000, Kim 
won a bronze medal in double 
trap, in 2004 a gold medal in double trap, and in 2008, a silver 
medal in skeet.

 When and how did Kim begin shooting? Kim has been 
shooting since she was seven years old, growing up with a 
fishing rod in one hand and a gun in another. This was all 
part of a family tradition-going back to her grandparents’ 
generation. Every year the family hunted deer and bears, and 
fished for catfish. She picked blackberries and made jam with 
her grandmother.

 At age seven, Kim actually shot her first two doves in 
Arizona. The game warden didn’t believe she could shoot, but 
when two flew by and her dad alerted her, she did it, and the 
game warden was a surprised believer. 

 At ten, Kim began shooting a competitive 22 rifle. First she 
won competitions in club shoots, and then moved on to the 
State Finals for six-and-a-half years. 

 How does one become so talented? It takes A LOT of 
practice. Try about 25,000 targets every year for four years, 
1500 rounds a week! Consequently most of the day is spent 
standing up. How about carrying a nine-and-a-half pound 
shotgun and five to ten pounds of ammo in your front and 
back pockets? Special molded ear plugs, as well as computer 
chips, are used to deaden sounds.

 When I saw Kim several months ago at the El Monte 
Historical Museum, she related that it was A LOT different 
shooting in damp London as opposed to sunny California. 
And then there are THE RULES! There are rules pertaining 
to clothing, color of clothing, and even equipment checks! 
Kim said that every time you competed, a sticker was put on 
your shotgun. Kim had many stickers and they were a great 
record of all her competitions. I remember her shotgun was 
stolen several years ago, and I was glad when it was retrieved. 
However I didn’t know anything about the stickers and all the 
stickers had been removed.

 Kim felt the toughest challenge was when she was forced to 
switch to International Skeet. No more double trap.

 One of her greatest moments was “in Atlanta in 1996, when 
all the United States participants were lined up and all the 
audience was chanting, “USA”. Complete strangers hugging 
each other-it was so touching, standing there representing 
your country and recalling all the hard work to get there”.

Last week, when my husband received his latest issue of 
Sports Illustrated, it predicted Kim will win the Gold! In USA 
Weekend, there also was mention of Kim. She’s quoted, “Every 
Olympic journey is unique. That’s what flashes when you’re 
up there on the Podium watching the American flag go to the 
top of the pole-of course, with the anthem playing. Personally, 
that’s why I keep coming back.”

 And congratulations once again Kim on your FIFTH 
consecutive Olympics. 

Kim Rhode with author Joan Schmidt in 1966

By Tom Purcell

"Those Harry Potter fanatics actually 
want a made-up game to 
become an Olympic sport!" 

"Ah, yes, you speak of Quidditch, 
a fictional sport invented 
by Harry Potter author J.K. 
Rowling. It requires a broomstick 
between one's legs at all 
times. According to Time, fans 
have established real Quidditch 

"Well, Quidditch may as well 
become an Olympic sport. 
There already are lots of nutty 

"The International Olympic 
Committee (IOC) votes on 
which sports to include or drop. 
This Summer Olympics feature 
26 sports with 39 associated 
disciplines. Some may not be as 
popular in America as in other 
parts of the world, but you don't 
want to be jingoistic, do you?"

"Look, how can the IOC drop 
croquet, a sport designed for 
rich people who can afford 
mallets, but keep badminton, 
a sport best played at summer 

"Badminton was invented by 
the British in the 18th century. 
It's played all over the world and 
requires a mix of cunning and 
athletic skill."

"If they want picnic sports, why 
not horseshoes? You spill a lot 
less beer playing horseshoes. 
And how did pingpong become 
an Olympic sport?" 

"I believe you mean table tennis, 
an intense sport that requires 
incredible reflexes, power and 

"No, I mean pingpong, a parlor 
game invented in the 1800s 
by rich British people with too 
much free time on their hands. 
The IOC ought to ditch that one 
for a game Americans could 
win with ease: beer pong!" 

"Well, what about soccer, the 
most-watched sport in the 

"Maybe the rest of the world 
watches it, but fewer than 
10 percent of Americans do. 
What's with the skinny players 
falling down, writhing in pain, 
every time someone bumps 
them? Our football players play 
with broken bones and joints 
and never complain." 

"Boy, you are tough. I admit 
I was sad to see baseball and 
golf dropped from the Summer 
Olympics. But the IOC can include 
only so many sports."

"Such as field hockey! I so enjoy 
watching players with dinky 
wooden sticks chase a hard ball 
on turf. I think it was invented 
for people who accidentally left 
their ice skates at home. But 
at least it's less nutty than the 
modern pentathlon." 

The modern pentathlon is unusual, 
combining pistol shooting, 
fencing, freestyle swimming, 
show jumping on a horse 
and cross-country running. It 
originates from Greece, where 
it was intended to showcase the 
skills of an ideal soldier." 

"They ought to modernize it 
to reflect the skills of an ideal 
soldier today. Have them jump 
out of helicopters, raid heavily 
guarded compounds and capture 
terrorist leaders while getting 
shot at." 

"I hear your complaints, but you 
have to admit there are a lot of 
wonderful traditional contests 
in the Summer Olympics: boxing, 
wrestling, weightlifting, 
diving, fencing, tennis, track 
and field, gymnastics, triathlon 
and more."

"Fair enough, but what the heck 
is rhythmic gymnastics? People 
jumping around with hoops, batons 
and pieces of fabric? It may 
be beautiful, but it looks more 
like a Vegas show. And synchronized 
swimming would be more 
entertaining if somebody tossed 
electric eels into the pool!" 

"Despite your misgivings, millions 
around the world will enjoy 
the Summer Olympics."

"They'd be enjoyed by more if 
the IOC brought back tug of 
war. Put free-market capitalists 
on one side, big-government 
socialists on the other. I'd pay 
good money to see that." 

Tom Purcell. Tom Purcell, a freelance 
writer is also a humor columnist for 
the Pittsburgh Tribune- Review

Young amateur boxers from boxing clubs 
throughout Southern California will be in 
Duarte on Saturday, Aug. 18 to compete in the 
7th Annual Duarte Youth Boxing Show hosted 
by Duarte Parks and Recreation’s Duarte Youth 
Boxing Club. 

The Boxing Show will be held at the Duarte 
High School Gym, 1565 E. Central Ave. Weigh-
ins start at 9 a.m., with matchmaking to follow. 
Doors will open to the public at 11:30 a.m., with 
the first of 15 to 20 bouts scheduled to begin at 1 
p.m. To compete as an amateur, boxers must be 
certified by USA Boxing Federation. Contenders 
ranging from 8 years old to 18 will be matched by 
age, weight and experience. The winner of each 
bout will receive a trophy.

Among local area boxing clubs invited to 
participate are clubs from Baldwin Park, South 
El Monte, Azusa, Pasadena, Anaheim, and 
Hawaiian Gardens.

Advance tickets are on sale for $6 at the Duarte 
Teen Center, 1400 Buena Vista St., $8 at the door. 
Tickets for children 11 years of age and under 
are $3, and kids 3 years old and under will be 
admitted free. Proceeds will be used to support 
the Duarte Youth Boxing Program and the 
Duarte Teen Center.

Food and refreshments will be available for 
purchase at the snack bar.

The City of Duarte Parks and Recreation 
Department started the Duarte Boxing Club in 
1997. The program has developed over the years 
into a highly competitive youth boxing program 
with participants competing successfully in local 
and national competitions.

For more information, call the Duarte Youth 
Boxing Club at (626) 303-0863 or (626) 967-







The Alverno High School student (blue top center) posted a PR of 7:35.46, shaving 27 
seconds from her previous race. This was only her 3rd time coompeting in the 2000 

Meters steeplechase. Winner posted a 7:31.82. Photo courtesy Lara Laramendi