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Sunday, February 19, 2012

RIP Jill Kinmont Boothe

Jill Kinmont Boothe (February 16, 1936-February 9, 2012):

Additional information HERE.

Perhaps you saw the 1975 made-for-television film The Other Side of the Mountain, the film about her life before and after the ski accident in 1955. This accident left Olympic hopeful Jill Kinmont paralyzed. Despite her hopes to ski again, she never did. However, she recovered enough to pursue a career as a teacher and lived the remainder of her life largely out media coverage. Her passing did not make the headlines.


  1. So sad, and an inspirational story. By the way, the link doesn't work.

  2. This woman, an inspiration, did not make headlines, but Houston did.


  3. Bunkerville,
    For whatever reason, I couldn't get the WaPo link to embed properly.

    Anyway, I've now put in this link instead.

  4. Brooke,
    This woman, an inspiration, did not make headlines, but Houston did.


    Of course, Jill Kinmont Boothe wasn't nearly as famous.

    She was very famous for a while -- even after her devastating accident. Then, as people typically do, they forgot about her.

    Every day was a struggle for this lady -- and for her parents, who were her caregivers. The man she was going to marry died in a plane crash. Some years later (maybe 20?), Mr. Booth married her.

  5. I may be mistaken, but I believe that she passed away on the 55th anniversary of her appearance on the cover of Sports Illustrated in 1955.

  6. Colleges make a big deal recruiting people who have "overcome adversity" in their life. I think that she's an actual example of what they mean through the search for those people, but not the result recruiters will typically achieve (through the soft prejudice of substituting skin color or financial need for actual evidence of adversity).

  7. Speedy G,
    Jill Kinmont Boothe was a go-getter! And not a whiner in any regard!

    I love the end of that last link that I left here in the comments section:

    "My life has really been very full," Kinmont Boothe says. "I've had lots of wonderful experiences."

    She taught for 35 years and continued to teach courses during her retirement -- at the school named for her.

    And she had a career in painting as well.

    A remarkable lady.

  8. Wow. I remember watching the movie as a kid...

    Many of our greatest heroes go unsung...

  9. I have heard of this lady and the film about her, but have seen no mention of her for years.

    Sorry to hear she passed away.

  10. This is the life that should be celebrated and not a singing drug addict.

  11. I remember the movie very well. Either I had forgotten -- or never realized -- how beautiful she was.

    For those who resent the publicity received on the life and death of Whitney Houston -- who was good-looking, but like most of the over-hyped products of the Pop-Rock-Rapcrap industry, a victim of the undeserved fame thrust upon her, and nobody special -- take comfort in this homely truth:

    The famous are rarely great, and the great are rarely famous.

    At least a pretty good movie was made about Jill Kinmont. What good that may have done her I don't know. That she, apparently, shunned or avoided publicity for the rest of her life is probably significant. Nevertheless her story has value for the rest of us -- if only to remind us how lucky we are to be able to lead ordinary lives.

    It's good to learn that Jill Kinmont's post-movie life was productive and satisfying. I don't know how she overcame despair. I'm not sure I could under similar circumstances. I applaud her for the courage and grace with which she filled the remainder of her life.

    I wonder what role, if any, Christian faith may have payed in her remarkable success as a human being?

    She certainly did much better than poor Christopher Reeve, who -- like another Christopher and victim of tragedy, the late Christopher Hitchens -- remained a cocky, unrepentant, proselytizing atheist till the end of his tortured existence. "Superman" expired at age 52.

    Ah, the ironies of life!

    The significance and quality of our lives, however, isn't determined by what happens to us, but in what we choose to do about it.

    ~ FreeThinke

  12. I didn't recognize the name, what an inspiring story. Thanks for sharing.

    A model for children today for sure.

    Right Truth

  13. thanks for the much needed dose of inspiration AOW>:)

  14. Just now, I found this photo tribute to Jill Kinmont Boothe. Amazing collection!

  15. FT,
    I have no idea as to whether or not Jill Kinmont Boothe was a person of faith.

    In any case, she can serve as a role model for all of us -- particularly the fact that she wasn't a whiner but rather made the best of what life had handed her.

    She did write a book, but it's no longer available. I believe that I read that book long ago, but I don't recall specific details.

  16. Odie,
    This is the life that should be celebrated and not a singing drug addict.

    I had that same thought myself, albeit not as harshly stated.

    In my view, Jill Kinmont Boothe is a "quiet hero," one who can teach us important lessons about life.

  17. AOW, you and others might draw inspiration from this story about another splendid human being waging a heroic battle against yet another severe form of physical adversity:


    This was all news to me, and came as a shock, because Judi Dench has been one of my favorite public figures for a long time.

    ~ FreeThinke

  18. Here's what DUCKY had to say about Whitney Houston over at The Bachanaal of Bathos being held in honor of the late drug-addicted warbler at GeeeeeZ:

    "A tragic life, a tragic death but that isn't uncommon. Usually it's one of the "extra people" who doesn't have a four-octave range and a self indulgent vocal style.

    "What Whitney gave us? Let's be real, she didn't give us much of anything. Neither did Michael Jackson or Kurt Cobain or a number of others [NOTE: Jim Morrison, Janis Joplin and Jimi Hendrix come instantly to mind] who lived similar lives and became darlings of the industry.

    "Want a tragic life, take Billie Holiday's. When the vice squad is ready to hook you up on your death bed, that's tragic. She had less than an octave and could go places Houston couldn't imagine.

    "Houston's legacy is Beyonce, Rihanna and more of the self indulgent.

    "Lot of folks die every day who are far more deserving of the attention being given Houston."

    For once I am in complete agreement with our Resident PITA and Thorn-In-The-Side.

    Ducky's politics may be all wet, but his perceptions about matters artistic are often dead on target

    Sad that GeeeeeZ too failed to acknowledge the life and death of Jill Kinmont, and chose instead to celebrate the death of yet-another grotesque casualty in the meretricious world of "Pop" music.

    ~ FreeThinke

  19. FT,
    Yes, Dame Judi Dench is in real trouble with macular degeneration.

    As is Stephen King -- although you may not admire him.

    I hope that more people become aware of the devastation of macular degeneration. It can strike at any age! I do occasoinally take the home test for this eye disease at home: the Amsler Grid Eye Test. My father had macular degeneration as a result of the complication of a detached retina following cataract surgery.

    The sad fact is that one form of macular degeneration has little effective treatment.

  20. I didn't know about her. Thank you for posting this, what a strong woman.
    Edge of the sandbox

  21. FT,
    I was never a fan of Whitney Houston. Hence, I have not posted a tribute to her.

    As I said at Z's site: I wasn't a fan of Houston's, but not for any particular reason than that I was busy with other aspects of my own life. That said, I must say that her voice was one that doesn't come along very often. Her range!

    When she married Bobby Brown, I knew that she was done for.

    You said:

    Sad that GeeeeeZ too failed to acknowledge the life and death of Jill Kinmont...

    I'm willing to bet that Z didn't know that Jill Kinmont Boothe had passed away. I myself didn't know until last night when I read Time Magazine.

  22. I agree too that Billie Holliday, while hardly what-any-knowledgeable-person-would-call a great SINGER, was very great ARTIST.

    Sorry to bring this unfavorable opinion over here, AOW, but I believe the abysmal state of our popular culture with its lack of honesty and integrity on all fronts is relevant, The confused clash between the intrinsically worthwhile and hyped meretriciousness is central to what's killing this society.

    And no it's NOT just "a matter of opinion."

    If we're ever going to make real progress again, we must learn to differentiate between the great, the good and the ghastly.

    ~ FT

  23. We take note of deaths according to what impacts our world.

    About a week ago Theo Angelopoulos died tragically in a sudden car accident.

    Who? Exactly.

  24. How ARE your eyes, AOW. You've said nothing in over a week. I hope "no news is good news?"

    I'm very sensitive to the subject, myself, having spent nearly four months almost totally blind within the past three and a half years.

    I still dare not drive any distance, as I've mentioned, and cannot go out at night on my own at all, but I am very grateful that I do have a considerable degree of functioning vision and can still enjoy my home and writing on the computer. I can't sight-read music at all, however, which used to be on of my great pleasures.

    One must accept what comes, and try to grow old gracefully. Not always easy. The temptation to feel resentment is ever-present, but I do everything I can to resist it.

    I guess that's why I have such contempt for these stupid Teen Idols who just THROW AWAY their lives on NOTHING.

    ~ FT

  25. AOW, thanks...I hadn't heard about Kinmont's death; how sad. She was inspirational.

    Thanks also for your words on Whitney Houston at my place; it is so sad to see amazing talents blow it so badly, isn't it. I'm hoping a lot of teens learn from that funeral because it was a fabulous tribute to Christian faith, wasn't it?

  26. Z,
    I'm hoping a lot of teens learn from that funeral because it was a fabulous tribute to Christian faith, wasn't it?


  27. FT,
    I see the opthalmologist today for the follow-up visit to the YAG laser posterior capsulotomy. I hope to get a full bill of health today from my ophthalmologist.

    As far as I can tell, my vision is fine now -- much better that it has been for several months. I was a bit worried after the procedure because, unlike in 1986, my vision didn't clear up until the following morning. Back in 1986, there was no dilation during the procedure; now, the dilation is full and lasts until the next day. What a relief to see well again! I got my tax figures done -- once the right eye was seeing properly. Prior to the laser procedure, I was misreading numbers.

    Next up this summer for the eyes in this household: Mr. AOW's cataract surgery. In his condition, the doctors may take added precautions, particularly with regard to his straining to get up from the bed and over to the bedside potty. It is imperative not to strain the first few weeks following cataract surgery so as to minimize the occurrence of a detached retina. I may have to get homecare aides for a period of time. I cannot do a lot of lifting because of my back injury.

    The visual impairment that you have must drive you up the wall! Still, as I often say, "It could be worse."

  28. Duck,
    Actually, I do know who Theo Angelopoulos was although I wasn't a fan of his work in the dreamlike mode.

    However, I didn't know that he had died recently.

  29. FT,
    Along the lines of some of the matters we've discussed, please see THIS, "At the End of life, Why Is It So Hard to Let Go?"

  30. Good morning, AOW.

    I'd be happy to look at your link, but it refused to open.

    I'm glad your vision is good again.

    After nearly eight years of eye operations on two eyes -- and sundry other pressing concerns which you already know about -- I feel I am a "veteran," and can accept the limitations I have, because there are so many other things in my life that compensate for what's missing.

    At least that's my story -- and I'm sticking to it. ;-)

    According to my ophthalmologist there is real hope that the eye on which he did the latest transplant back in June eventually WILL clear and could very well be stronger than the other.

    It's very complicated to explain medically, but there is a large "blister" on the surface of the "new" eye -- a condition left over from before the operation. That "blister" is distorting the vision. My doctor says it is getting smaller and smaller, but because it was there for so many years will probably take a full eighteen months to go away.

    Naturally I hope it does, but if it doesn't, I could still get along all right, thank God.

    I know it's very expensive, but I'm glad you plan to get some in home healthcare assistance while Mr. AOW recovers from his cataract surgery. It's important for BOTH your sakes. If he's on Medicare by then, Medicare will probably pay for it -- short term. At least they USED to. Heaven knows what "they" will and will not do now that we are burdened with Obamacare.

    The new Cross our Dear Leader has put on our backs has already had a profoundly deleterious effect on the way my ophthalmologist must keep records, do billing and write prescriptions. His staff is WONDERFUL, but they have admitted to me -- privately, of course -- that the New Rules have made life miserable for them. And this, of course is only the beginning.

    Nothing unexpected there, of course. What a pity!

    ~ FreeThinke

  31. I have to admit I'm puzzled.

    How in the WORLD could anything connected to the regrettable phenomenon called Whitney Houston have even the remotest connection to Christian Faith?

    I remember so well when her "version" of our National Anthem came out, and I'll say straight out it was one of THE most OFFENSIVE presentations it was ever my misfortune to run into -- truly a TRAVESTY -- DISGUSTING! -- a blatant example of the WORST POSSIbLE TASTE -- and a demonstration of absolute MISUNDERSTANDING.

    Oscar Wilde is supposed to have said, "Whatever is popular is wrong."

    I'm not sure that has always been true, but in my never humble opinion it certainly has been absolutely true since the Sick-sties.

    ~ FreeThinke

  32. FT, HERE is that link again. The link goes to an essay in yesterday's Washington Post. Lately, I've been having trouble getting links to WaPo articles to work for those who don't subscribe online.

    Anyway, here is a bit of the essay:

    Our unrealistic attitudes about death, through a doctor’s eyes

    ...I head to the ER. If I’m lucky, the family will accept the news that, in a time when we can separate conjoined twins and reattach severed limbs, people still wear out and die of old age. If I’m lucky, the family will recognize that their loved one’s life is nearing its end.

    But I’m not always lucky. The family may ask me to use my physician superpowers to push the patient’s tired body further down the road, with little thought as to whether the additional suffering to get there will be worth it. For many Americans, modern medical advances have made death seem more like an option than an obligation. We want our loved ones to live as long as possible, but our culture has come to view death as a medical failure rather than life’s natural conclusion.

    These unrealistic expectations often begin with an overestimation of modern medicine’s power to prolong life, a misconception fueled by the dramatic increase in the American life span over the past century....

  33. FT,
    How in the WORLD could anything connected to the regrettable phenomenon called Whitney Houston have even the remotest connection to Christian Faith?

    According to various sources, Whitney Houston carried a Bible in her suitcase wherever she traveled. The Bible she carried was tattered and torn from use.

    Much of the funeral service did call upon the Lord.

    Taken at face value, the funeral service (a home-going) stressed the need for salvation.

    Of course, the contradiction is what Whitney Houston was doing in the last few days of her life. Hardly a role model for walking with the Lord.

    I have mixed feelings about her version of the National Anthem. Yes, it was enthusiastic. However, I like to hear the piece performed "straight."

  34. FT,
    I got a clean bill of health from the ophthalmologist this morning. The vision in my right eye is not as sharp as the vision in my left eye. But that's always been true. My left eye is my dominant eye.

    That blister you mentioned....It's on the cornea?

  35. Ugh. Look what Whitney Houston's daughter was doing after the funeral:

    Whitney Houston’s daughter disappeared for several hours after her mother’s funeral—and was found using drugs, according to two sources close to the family. Allison Samuels on the plan to get her to rehab.

  36. Thanks for our generous response(s), AOW.

    I agree with the sentiments in the essay from the WaPo. Naturally we'd all like ourselves and our loved ones to live as long as possible -- but in my case only as long as we are LIVING, and not being "maintained" artificially in a state of perpetual agony, insanity or unconsciousness.

    I probably over-reacted to the Whitney Houston phenomenon. It was not SHE to whom I so strenuously object but to the rotten popular culture that lauds and applauds the kind of thing she did, which I can't help but regard as musical travesty.

    Frankly, I think the poor woman was probably a very nice, very good-looking girl who couldn't help having the background from which she came. I think she -- like almost all of the pop music idols from Elvis on down -- was USED by cynical, manipulative "promoters" who've shamelessly pandered to the the basest instincts of the population purely for profit.

    I think the post-WWII pop music world is evil. I saw it begin to emerge and take over when I was in junior high school. The "shift in the wind" was gut-wrenching -- deeply disturbing to me. Somehow, even as a fourteen-year-old, I knew we were headed for Big Trouble.

    I wish I had been wrong, but I was right. I see "Art," if you will, as generally ahead of the curve -- an accurate predictor of societal trends.

    ~ FT

  37. So glad you got a good report from your eye doctor!

    I'm sure it's a great relief.

    I took yesterday off, and indulged myself in front of the TV watching most of a Perry Mason marathon. For some reason I have always loved Perry Mason. Raymond Burr, Barbara Hale, Dennis Hopper, Ray Collins, and William Talman in action is like having dear old friends drop in for a visit.

    Funny! I was thinking just the other day how much missed seeing reruns of the old black-and white Perry Mason series, when Lo and Behold the Hallmark channel announced this marathon.

    Won't pretend Perry Mason is high culture or anything of real significance, but I find it relaxing and reassuring -- unlike almost all of the new stuff that's been thrown our way for a very long time.

    Time to get breakfast!

    ~ FT

  38. FT,
    Good morning.

    The issue of end-of-life care has been on my mind for a long time, especially since Mr. AOW had that devastating stroke.

    Just yesterday, my cousin stopped by. She will be my medical proxy. I'm choosing her over my husband because "the industry" could challenge his decisions -- not to mention how much difficulty it would be for him to get to my bedside in a hospital. He simply doesn't have the stamina to stay away from home for hours or days on end.

    As for pop culture, I understand what you mean. I didn't get all caught up in the mainstream of that pop culture; while everyone else was listening to the Beatles and the Rolling Stones, I was listening to classical choral, musical theatre, Big Band, and "the Mafia crooners" (Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra, etc.).

    Tomorrow, I'll have a post on another disturbing societal trend. **drum roll for suspense** I'll be interested in your views on the topic.

  39. FT,
    A Perry Mason marathon? I missed it! Will the Hallmark Channel have another one?

  40. Hello again, AOW!

    We have TWO Hallmark channels where I live. The second --channel 719 in the Comcast System -- will be showing two Perry Mason episodes each week day I think from 11:00 to 1:00 followed by Murder She Wrote. Better check your listings, because I'm not exactly sure of the time.

    It sure is a welcome addition to the options we have.

    I've been hoping the powers that be would set up a Mystery-Detective Channel and rebroadcast ALL the old shows I used to like. Matlock has gotten a bit old.

    Have a happy day!

    ~ FT

  41. This may be late for you, but Channel 154 in the Comcast System is showing Alfred Hitchcock Presents from 11:00 PM to midnight each weekday night. No commercials! It's a treat.

    ~ FT

  42. CORRECTION: The Perry Mason episodes are being shown M-F from noon to 2:00 PM on channel 719 Comcast.

    Murder She Wrote follows from 2-4, and is repeated from midnight to 2:00 AM.

    Hope this leads to some happy escape viewing for you and Mr. AOW.

    ~ FT

  43. FT,
    I did some checking and discovered that Mr. AOW and I are not subscribed to the Hallmark channel that offers "Perry Mason." **sigh**


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