Arete Honors Remember Diane Geppi-Aikens

Oct. 29, 2003

BALTIMORE, MD - The former Diane Geppi-Aikens, beloved coach and friend in the lacrosse and Loyola College community, will have her memory and legacy honored at the 2003 Arete Honors airing this Sunday at 5 p.m. on CBS. Arete (ah-REE-tee), an ancient Greeks term for the embodiment of excellence and valor, inspires the hour-long program produced annually for CBS Television.

Now in its 14th year, the Arete Honors recognize athletes and or coaches who have overcome tremendous obstacles in the pursuit of their goals. Geppi-Aikens who despite being diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor that left her partially paralyzed, remained with the Loyola women's lacrosse team, coaching them to a Final Four appearance in 2003.

Leading her team to its greatest season ever, Geppi-Aikens' courage and inspiration was unparalleled. Loyola's 2003 performance was so powerful that media outlets across the country could not fail to recognize it as the revelation of pure excellence. The Greyhounds truly exemplified the ageless ideal that in giving their best of body and spirit, they rise above themselves in honor of their amazing coach and friend.

Developed in 1990, Arete honors inspirational athletes and coaches who, through extraordinary effort, have honored all of sport and exemplified the best aspects of the human spirit. Past recipients include:

Hank AaronMuhammed AliLance ArmstrongArthur AshCynthia CooperRulon GardnerFlorence Griffith-JoynerEvander HolyfieldJack Joyner-KerseeMark McGwireWalter PaytonCal Ripken, Jr.Sammy SosaKerri StrugJoe TorreLaura WilkinsonTiger WoodsDave Winfield

On Nov. 2 from 5-6 p.m. EST, Jim Nantz will host the 2003 Arete Honors. Along with Geppi-Aikens, four other individuals will be honored. They are

Bootie Barker: While Barker does not consider himself as a role model, he is very much seen in that light among many of his peers in the NASCAR Winston Cup series garage. Barker is confined to a wheelchair, but nothing could confine his dream to be a crew chief within auto racing's most prestigious series.

Tyler Hamilton: In the second stage of the Tour de France, Hamilton was caught in a crash involving 34 riders and broke his collarbone in two places. To the amazement of doctors, media and his teammates, Hamilton refused to allow this injury to end his tour.

Jake Porter: Porter was born with a condition called Chromosomal Fragile-X, a condition which severely impairs his ability to learn and process information. However, Porter earned the memory of a lifetime when he ran 49 yards to the End Zone for Northwest High School.

Alex Zanardi: With only 13 laps remaining in the American Memorial 500, Zanardi pulled out onto the track after a routine pit stop when his car was hit by another racer going 200 miles per hour. The horrific crash took Zanardi's legs below the knee, but nothing could take away his spirit.

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