Kathy Martin, Joy Upshaw tell pride in joining Masters Hall of FameW60 distance legend Kathy Martin said: “What an honor and such heady company.” Joy Upshaw’s reaction to being named alongside Kathy and nine others to the USATF Masters Hall of Fame: â€śWow! Really? Thatâ€™s cool!â€ť Kathy spoke for all when she said her induction “is a thrill and very humbling when I see the list of those before me and current inductees. … I was aware that I was being nominated because Mary Trotto had asked Chuck for the stats. But I also know others have nominated and not selected so uncertain as to the outcome. Sue Nesbihal (Cordero) called my cell to congratulate and that was the first I heard. Was in NYC with family for Christmas weekend-Christmas spectacular, etc., so the timing was all the more special. My husband is also my coach and he was in the car with me and heard it simultaneously. He said: â€śWow, that is awesome,â€ť and to be nominated with the two most gracious competitors is incredible (Rita and Joy). We are both flying without a plane. And my son was high-fiving us all over the place. Fantastic celebratory dinner in NYC followed by seeing the tree lit.”
More from Kathy’s gracious reply to my email interrogation:
I am giddy with excitement. It gives validation for all the hard work over the years and to be recognized by your peers for the efforts is tremendous. I feel so humbled to be in the company and had the privilege and joy of calling Bill Benson and telling him that both John McManus and I made it in the same year. Bill was so excited and happyâ€”his dream come true. (And Bill was the reason I started running track. He would hand-write me little communiques about how I could run the times and just encouraged me to get to the track and try!) Oh, the talent that lies dormant unless someone is there to advocate and encourage.
Congratulations to all and many thanks to Mary Trotto for her endless hours of work on this and all that she does. And many thanks to Sue Nesbihal for her advocacy and support. She and Mary took me under their wing at my first international competition and led the way. I so appreciate the camaraderie and friendships that have developed and look forward to being back in the competitive field.
From Joy, the W50 multi-eventer and long jump specialist and record-holder:
Masterstrack.com: When did you learn, and how?
Joy Upshaw: From You! You emailed me to tell me.
Were you aware you had been nominated?
I knew I had been nominated, because Mary notified me in an email… She asked for stats and AOY award dates, American and world records. So I had to do some research .(Luckily, I have saved/knew some results â€¦ Also a great resource was our Masterstrack.com archives and mastershistory.org!
Racing as a master since 1992, I had to find some things.. Actually spent a lot of time looking through the results and seeing fellow masters times of Cindy Steenbergen, Marty Krulee, Pat Peterson, Christel Donley, Robert Thomas, Phil Raschker, Becky Sisley, Ed Burke, Don Drummond, etc. Good stuff there!
How did you share the news with your family, and what was their reactions?
Let them know I was notified about it. They were excitedâ€”since they have been to so many meets and seen results, etc.
What does this honor mean to you?
It IS quite an honor to be in the Hall with so many other fellow Masters Track Athletes! We have all trained many hours, competed many a day, gone through the same experiences. Having a track & field visionâ€”balancing life, work, family, friends for excellence in our sport.