Year in Review

Strange but True

Page 4 of 4

The team he works for could be charged with more serious offenses.

Gone but Not Forgotten

Linda Boreman, who as Linda Lovelace starred in the porn classic Deep Throat, died in a car accident near Highlands Ranch. At the time of her death, Boreman, 53, had repudiated the movie and become a crusader against smut, saying an abusive husband forced her to make the film.

Neil Murdoch arrived in Crested Butte in 1974 and quickly earned a reputation as a visionary for pushing the sport of mountain biking. His ability to transform old Schwinn bikes into fat-tire machines with ultra-low gears that could conquer ski terrain became the stuff of legend. But something went flat in 1998, when a sheriff's deputy found that Murdoch was using the Social Security number of a Pennsylvania man. Soon after, Murdoch and one of his cycles disappeared in the Four Corners area -- and two weeks later the town threw him a going-away party in absentia, enshrining his mug in the Mountain Biking Hall of Fame. In September 2001, a U.S. marshal tracked Murdoch down in Taos; he's been wanted since 1973 for jumping bail in Albuquerque after being caught with 26 pounds of cocaine. Last spring, the 61-year-old Murdoch -- whose real name is Richard Bannister -- pleaded guilty to federal charges of trafficking cocaine and failure to appear. Those fat-tired bikes can get you out of tough places, but not Murdoch's current fix.

Out of the ashes of the Missionary Ridge fires near Durango emerged Colorado's man of the year: Fred Finlay. The self-employed carpenter was given major exposure with a photo on the cover of the June 24 Rocky Mountain News, which showed Finley seated while holding his cat, Twitchy, and not keeping a very good handle on a certain portion of his anatomy. Although the News subsequently claimed that "an unfortunate convergence of shadows" had "left the false impression with some readers that it showed something that clearly didn't belong in a family newspaper, a man's testicle," Finlay himself clarified that the item in question was exactly that.

*These accounts were compiled from reports in local media outlets, including Westword.

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Ernie Tucker
Contact: Ernie Tucker