Monday, April 13, 2020

USA Swimming Olympic Trials Scheduled for June 2021 in Omaha

ISHOF Honoree Bruce Furniss Set to Be Released from Hospital After Severe Heart Attack

This update was posted by Bruce Furniss’s family on April 9:
Good News – Our prayers have been answered
We just heard from Sharon [Bruce’s wife] that Bruce is coming home today!  It has been another rapid recovery in this roller-coaster experience.  Sharon reported this morning she received a call from Bruce this morning: “Sharon, if they and you don’t discharge me, I will sign myself out.”  Bruce said he is much better: no longer in pain and his breathing is much better.  He even got himself out of bed this morning.
Sharon conferred with the doctors who said Bruce was “good to go”.  Our husband, father, brother, uncle, cousin and friend is coming home!  I give thanks to God.
Original Story:
Olympic gold medalist and swimming hall of famer Bruce Furniss has been hospitalized after suffering a severe heart attack on March 30, according to his family.
Furniss remains in intensive care in his native California. His family has set up an account via Caring Bridge to offer updates on his condition and share support with loved ones.
Furniss’ family also released a statement:
“First, we want you to know how much we appreciate your support and prayers, particularly, in such an unprecedented time of crisis for so families across our country.  Our hearts go out to any family who has a loved one in ICU with whom they cannot visit or even gather as a family to support.  It is something difficult to fathom at a time when families need to be together to support one another.
“The outpouring of concern and prayers for Bruce, from his many friends, is testimony to how much he is loved.  One positive new development is that the hospital agreed to allow Bruce’s wife, Sharon, to be with him briefly once they bring him out of a medically induced hypothermia.  Sharon is an incredibly strong person and sometime today or tomorrow she will be able to hold his hand for all of us.”
Photo Courtesy: ISHOF
At the 1976 Olympics, Furniss, 62, won gold in the 200 freestyle in a world-record 1:50.29 to lead an American podium sweep. He joined Mike Bruner, John Naber and Jim Montgomery to set a world record and win gold in the 800 free relay in Montreal. He also earned two World Championship gold medals in relays and individual silvers in the 200 and 400 free at the 1975 World Championship in Cali, Colombia.
A 1987 inductee to the International Swimming Hall of Fame, Furniss set 10 world records, including five individual marks, in the 200 free and 200 individual medley. The latter record was one he took from his older brother, Steve Furniss, in 1975.
Bruce Furniss’ storied swimming career included six NCAA Championships at the University of Southern California and two Kiphuth Awards (1975 and 1976). He won 11 AAU Championships and set 19 American records (10 individual) despite battling arthritis throughout his 12-year swimming career.
Update, April 8:
Slow Progress & a lot of Pain – Bruce remains in ICU. This morning he had a surgery to correct a problem with the defibrillator. It was successful and the internal bleeding has stopped. There should be no long term effects. Bruce is experiencing discomfort, but he is making steps forward on the way back to mending. Perhaps, Bruce and all of us will need patience. We know he has the toughness, determination and persistence. We also know the Lord is protecting him. Thanks for all your support and prayers.
Like me, it is a time for slowing down and taking care of the priorities one step at a time. Perhaps you feel that in this “shelter-in-place” new normal as well. “Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” — Wise Words for this time. Matthew 6:34 (suggest reading Matthew 6:25-34).
It is a time for loving family and friends (especially those who are alone) and for reflecting on our relationship with God. We will keep you updated. Thanks for checking in.
Update, April 7:
Not a good day. I just called Bruce who answered with three short phrases: “I am not doing well. They are transferring me downstairs (ICU). Pray for me.”
This morning Bruce had the angiogram which was followed by a procedure to insert a defibrillator. We were even hoping that he might come home tomorrow. Sharon [Bruce’s wife] heard from the cardiologist tonight and mentioned the transfer to the ICU is likely due to complications from this morning’s surgery.
We believe in the power of prayer (or I would not be posting this). Please pray for God’s hand on Bruce at this moment. (6:50 pm).
Update, April 4:
Sharon reports that the Neurologist told her this morning that Bruce is so high functioning that he no longer needs to see him any more! I was stunned – this seems impossible. The neurologist reported he gave Bruce a math problem which Bruce tackled and asked for another! He concluded, “the average person would not have survived this trauma, but Bruce’s athleticism and big heart have allowed him to progress quickly and prevail. I am no longer needed here.” Wow – nothing less than miraculous.
Bruce is getting restless (which is a sign his old self is back as many of you know). Please pray for patience and calm. He must avoid overexertion of his brain by not multitasking or overdoing things – two of Bruce’s fortes. This could be the ultimate test for Bruce in the coming weeks. I am still looking forward to talking to Bruce myself and was scheduled this evening to do this, but elected to spare Bruce from my heavy heart – maybe we will connect later this weekend. Phone calls to Bruce are limited at this time to just Sharon, the kids, me and my brothers.
Update, April 2:
Another BIG day
5:30 am this morning – Sharon is woken by a call from the hospital. The nurse says “Bruce is awake and he wants to talk to you!” Wow! Bruce says S-L-O-W-L-Y “I love you and I am going to be fine.” The nurse says his movements are equally slow. Sharon asked Bruce if he felt all the love and prayers from all of you. He replies slowly “Y-E-S I D-O” in slow motion but with a lot of heart! Bruce asks “What happened?” and Sharon explained. Bruce knew that he was at St Joseph’s.
8:30 am – Sharon gets the first of three calls from Bruce’s doctors. The first is the doctor in charge of the ICU who tells her he is USC class of ’76 and mentioned that Bruce is class of 1979. Sharon asks “How did you know?” Bruce told him! The doctor says Bruce has made a big jump yesterday which was unexpected. He says that Bruce is even initiating conversation.
Later the Cardiologist calls, he and Sharon decide to delay the angiogram until Monday. After speaking for a little bit, the doctor tells Sharon “Bruce wants to talk to you.” Bruce: “WHEN —ARE— YOU — GO—ING —TO—COME—AND—SEE—ME?” Sharon tried to explain about the pandemic which Bruce vaguely remembered but did not fully understand the purpose of the restrictions we are now all under because of Covid-19.
The third doctor was the neurologist. He also indicated that we made a major turn yesterday for the good that was not expected and that Bruce has made HUGE progress in a short time. He did warn the recovery will take many weeks but was optimistic that Bruce will likely get back to “baseline”. He said during this period he will repeat himself and have amnesia. (He will continue to fit right in with his three aging brothers at our lunches as we already do this!) Bruce has passed the swallow test so he will be taking food soon. He started occupational and physical therapy today.
We continue to be grateful for the Lord’s provision and for all of your love and support. I feel like a dark cloud is being lifted. Please continue to pray for improved & faster speech and movements as well as emotional stability. He must take this recovery slow and we must all be patient. The improvements of the last two days have been truly miraculous. We are blessed to have him with us and I look forward to a chance to FaceTime my dear brother in the coming days. We will keep you posted on this journey!
Publishers Note: On behalf of everyone at the International Swimming Hall of Fame and the staff at Swimming World, our thoughts and prayers go out to Bruce for a speedy recovery.  We wish for much strength and support to his family and loved ones.

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

ISHOF Paragon Award WInner Terry Sayring Passes Away at age 81.

Terry Sayring Passes Away
January 5, 1939 - March 16, 2020
by Bruce Wigo
Terry Sayring and Bill Fraidy

ISHOF is sad to announce that Terry Sayring, the 2017 Paragon Award recipient for water polo, passed away on March 16, 2020, after a courageous battle against cancer. Terry was 81 years old.

Sayring first became involved in water polo when, upon being discharged from the Marine Corp in California, he moved in with two Olympic water polo players from El Segundo. They eventually introduced him to water polo innovator and Olympic Coach, Uhro Saari, who got Terry involved in officiating in 1963. The rest, as they say is water polo history.

Terry was involved in water polo at almost every level. He has officiated events including the FINA World Championships, the FINA World Cup, FINA Jr. World Championships, Pan American Games, NCAA Championships and the AAU Championships. In 1969, he founded the Southern California Aquatics Federation which became the US water polo referee association. He was the manager of the 1980 and 1984 USA Olympic teams, as well as two Pan American teams, and served as the competition manager for the 1995 FINA World Cup and 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta. He also served as the tournament director for the Women’s FINA Cup, Men’s Junior FINA Worlds in Long Beach, and was a member of the ASUA Technical Committee for 12 years. In 1995, he was presented the FINA Silver Pin.

In addition to water polo, Sayring’s other passion was been genealogy. Over the past 30 years, he has been able to trace his ancestors back to 2700 BC, including the Mayflower, the Revolutionary War and the Civil War. This helped with his next project: The American Water Polo Foundation, a non-profit 401C, that collects memorabilia and researches the history of USA Water Polo back to its earliest origins. The foundation has collected information on the Men’s Olympic Teams from 1904 to the present and the Women’s Olympic Team from the 2000 Olympics to the present.

Sayring was a Life Member of United States Water Polo since 1978, and secretary of the USA Water Polo Hall of Fame for 25 years. He was elected into the USA Water Polo Hall of Fame in 1986 and received the USA Water Polo Award in 1988, the organization’s highest honor.

In 2015, he founded American Water Polo Collections, Inc., a California non-profit dedicated to preserving the history of water polo in America. Up to his final months he also served as supervisor of water polo officials for the Big West Conference and a member of the National Referee Evaluators Committee. He was been married for 56 years with three daughters, three grandchildren and three great grandchildren.

Terry will always be remembered as one of the great volunteers to have served the aquatic sports selflessly and passionately during his lifetime.