Tragically, an apartment building manager found Gloria’s body within hours of the school’s phone call. The teen had been abducted, raped and brutally murdered. Her killer has never been found.
“A lot of people don’t understand the devastation of losing a child in such a violent way,” Yvonne says. “Anyone who walks out the door and doesn’t return due to violence, your life literally changes at that point.”
Yvonne has since become an activist involved in child safety programs such as Stranger Danger and Cleveland’s Midnight Basketball League. Here is how she turned her tragedy into hope that now reaches children halfway around the world.
Talk about wine like a pro
> up the ante: Identify the wine’s origin by checking out its legs. Higher-alcohol wines come from hotter climates — Chile, for example. If “legs” fall down the side of the glass in sheets, the wine came from a cooler climate.
> up the ante: Order crème brulee and a port wine for dessert. “The same rule applies to sweet.”
> up the ante: Be sure you pronounce the word correctly. Don’t say Meritage with a French accent. The word is American and rhymes with heritage.
> up the ante: Don’t be fooled by the word “reserve” on a label. “It’s a marketing word that literally has no legal definition on a wine label.”
Avoid a heart attack
Dr. Steve Nissen, chairman of the Department of Cardiovascular Medicine at the Cleveland Clinic, has a confession: There’s really nothing new when it comes to heart-attack advice. But that doesn’t necessarily mean we’re heeding it. “We’re seeing heart disease at younger ages because of the obesity epidemic,” Nissen says. “We have to focus on prevention.” Plain and simple, it’s a numbers game. “ Keep your blood pressure and LDL cholesterol low,” he says. If your blood pressure consistently hovers above 140/90, it may be time for medication (an ideal reading is 120/80 or lower). Finding the best LDL number isn’t as simple. LDL, as opposed to necessary HDL, is bad cholesterol. If you’re in good health, any LDL number under 130 is acceptable, but only your doctor can recommend the best number for you — a general rule: the lower the better. Above all, says Nissen, avoid trans fats, add some regular exercise, and you’ll keep your heart pumping strong.
|Stick a landing: Pilot
Robert Snezek, 42, a flight instructor for Zone Aviation in Elyria, remembers his most memorable landing — sort of.
The Conditions | Winds were blowing at 50 mph. Snezek was in the air with a man who had just started to train for his license. They were flying a Piper Tomahawk, a light plane good for beginners.
In the Air | Snezek enforced a “sterile cockpit,” meaning there was to be no chatting about last night’s baseball game or anything else. “Beginners can’t handle conversation,” he notes. Maintaining proper altitude and heading are the primary challenges. His student was fighting the wind, but otherwise doing fine.
The Landing | Snezek’s student, still struggling with the winds, began to lose speed on his final descent, and the plane plunged 50 feet. Snezek felt a surge of adrenaline. “I grabbed the throttle and shoved it forward,” he says. “Power fixes everything.” The descent slowed, but the plane hit the ground — hard. Because of the spring-loaded gears, the plane bounced back up about 20 feet. When it came to a final stop, Snezek climbed out, expecting to see smashed landing gear. “It was fine,” he says. Obviously, he was relieved.
Stick a landing: Gymnast
The Conditions | The ’96 U.S. team had just won the gold. Despite a stress fracture in her tibia, Moceanu performed solidly, but blew it on the vault —falling the first time and wobbling the other. She’d be performing the same vault — a Yurchenko one-and-a-half twist — during individual competition.
In the Air | The first four strides were taken slowly to build up momentum. In the next nine strides, she reached maximum speed then flew into her roundoff. Both feet landed on the springboard, which launched her blindly toward the vault behind her. “I reached backward, toward the vaulting horse, tightened up my abdominal and leg muscles and exploded out of my shoulders,” she says. In flight, she executed her twist-and-a-half.
The Landing | “I keenly focused on greeting the floor with my feet while absorbing the shock through my quadriceps,” she says. “That was the essential ingredient to my perfect landing.” Her feet hit the floor hard. She stood up straight, flung her shoulders back and threw her arms into the air. “Obviously,” she says, “I was proud.”
Trace your family roots
> Leaf through the family tree: You might not know your great-grandmother’s maiden name, but your aunt might. Elder family members are valuable sources of information. Don’t wait to pick their memories.
> Rake it in: Birth, marriage, military and death certificates are gold mines. Old letters, clippings and photographs may show sides of your ancestors you can’t find in census data.