The Des Moines Register from Des Moines, Iowa on August 30, 1992 · Page 13
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The Des Moines Register from Des Moines, Iowa · Page 13

Des Moines, Iowa
Issue Date:
Sunday, August 30, 1992
Page 13
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Des JHoinrs Sunbatj gistcr RANDY EVANS, Iowa News Editor, 515-284-8065 Diocese Bids on S&L Building Tlie Des Moines Catholic Diocese may buy a landmark building in downtown Des Moines. Page4B Sunday, Augi st30, 1992 , Section Record Price For 4-H Steer Beef packer Monfort Inc. of Des Moines made the top bid on tlie grand chimpion steer: 016,000. Page5B towA Mews Iowa Boy Ciucfe Offenburger A road trip of a lifetime ew York, N.Y. By the time you are reading this, you will know whether the Kickoff Classic Saturday night really was a classic football game. Regardless, this has been a classic road trip. ; To watch 100 or more Iowa high school girls take on one of the great cities of the world has been, well, amazing. "New York seems like one big ant farm," said Elaine Jarnagin, a sophomore from Johnston High School just outside Des Moines. Deanna Engstrom, chaperoning a group from West Bend-Mallard High School, said, "One of the things our girls wanted to see most was a hooker. And when they did, it was kind of hard to keep them from taking pictures." I've been a chaperon for cheerleaders, members of the pompon squads and drill teams from Johnston and Ur-bandale high schools. Other girls are here from Ballard High School in Huxley and Western Dubuque High in Epworth. And a troupe of 27 baton twirlers, some as young as 10 years old, came from all over the state. Invited To Perform They were all invited to perform at the Kickoff Classic game matching the Iowa Hawkeyes and North Carolina State Wolfpack. A contingent of 5,000 or more Hawkeye fans was expected. Swelling their number were former Iowans now living in the Big Apple as well as family and friends of several Hawk-eye players who grew up in this area. For example, Danan Hughes, the senior wide receiver, said he had "about 200 people coming from Bayonne," his New Jersey hometown, located 10 minutes from the game site, Giants Stadium. The stadium is part of The Meadowlands sports complex, which is just across the Hudson River from New York. "A lot of them haven't seen me play since high school," said Hughes, who also plays pro baseball in the Milwaukee Brewers organization. ' The tailgating started about five hours before kickoff. Hawkeye Marching Band . The Iowa high school girls, along with about two dozen from North Carolina, were to perform at halftime with the Hawkeye Marching Band. After what I've seen here, I have new appreciation for what these drill teams and twirlers do at games. A hard-driving staff from Bowl Games of America, the organization that coordinates talent for these spectacles, put the girls through a full seven hours of practice Friday and seven more Saturday on the steamy Astro-turf, in the stadium. The Iowa girl most prominently featured in the show was to be Theresa Uchytil, 16, a junior baton twirler from Urbandale. Twirling since first grade, she is the reigning state champion in her age group and she finished fourth in national competition in July. In the past year, the baton has taken her to Memphis, Atlanta, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Chicago and now New York. . What makes Uchytil's success all the more admirable is that she was born without a left hand. "It doesn't slow me down at all," she said. "I've never known anything different." Loves a Crowd She was to be featured at midfield during two numbers. Would it bother her to twirl before the big crowd in the 77,000 seat stadium? "I hope it's full, I really do," she said ahead of time. "Crowds give me a rush.' ' Indeed. Sarah Meyer, a sophomore at Western Dubuque High School, said all the hustle and bustle gave her new perspective on her hometown of Farley. "I'd never move here," she said. "New York is all right, but it's a visiting town, not a living town." Jolene Zimmerman, a Western Dubuque junior who lives in the tiny town of Graf, agreed. "Country people should not live here," she said. But, oh, to visit. "Probably the highlight of all I've done in high school," said Tiffany Zortman, a Johnston senior. "So many people, just kind of doing whatever they want to do, and nobody else seems to care." . Now it's back to Farley and Graf and Johnston and all the rest of our hometowns. Is it really another 24-hour bus trip? Hey, it's a long way from New York to the real world. 'We Must Take the Reins' - kr . Leader Louis Farrakhan is urging black Americans to contribute money toward buying farmland and establishing financial independence. DAVID PETERSONTllE REGISTER Preston and Constance Muhammad moved to try. The Nation of Islam teaches sexual mo-Des Moines to build a Nation of Islam minis- rality, healthy diet and avoidance of drugs. Nation of Islam builds ministry o serve Des Moines' blacks trust of one another." Minister Preston Muhammad, 44, said the thrust of the Des Moines effort "is to elevate the consciousness of our people." Muhammad came from Joliet, 111., to develop the Nation of Islam Study Group in Des Moines. "If we can elevate the consciousness, it will go a long way to overcome the mental, moral and spiritual maladies we have been beset with," he said. Muhammad stressed that blacks don't have to be the enemy of whites, but must be independent of them. He outlined the organization's goals: "We want the right to self-determination, to govern our affairs. We are looking for freedom, justice and equality. We believe they are God-given rights for everyone. We are law-abiding citizens who believe in law and order and hard work. "We don't soft-shoe around the issue of race. Everyone is beating around the bush and not looking for an honest solution to the problem. The Honorable Louis Farrakhan teaches us the federal government cannot solve our problems and doesn't have the will. We must take the reins in our own hands and work this thing out before it is too late." Muhammad said that "white folks are tired of black people asking for this, that or the other. We need to build up something for ourselves. We were never given the training, equipment and opportunity after we were let off the plantation." Farrakhan is hailed as the successor of Elijah By WILLIAM SIMBR0 Register Religion Writer Recent organizing efforts by the Nation of Islam among Des Moines blacks will be capped by a speech today by Minister Louis Farrakhan, controversial leader of the Chicago-based Muslim sect. In his first Des Moines appearance, Farrakhan will speak at 5 p.m. at the Des Moines Convention Center on the movement's "Three-Year Economic Program" to promote independence for black Americans. Farrakhan supporters from several states are expected to attend, and promoters hope for a capacity crowd of 4,000. The core of the economic program is a savings plan for blacks to send in $10 a month for three years to buy farmland and develop financial independence. "We must change our direction if we are to survive," Farrakhan says in a leaflet describing the plan. "We must look elsewhere; we cannot depend upon our former slave masters' children to take care of us any longer The major impediment in curing our economic illnesses is that we have no ISLAM Please turn to Page 6B After 10 years, time fails to heal family's wounds The kidnapping of Johnny Gosch in 1982 remains one of the great crime mysteries of Iowa. By FRANK SANTIAGO Register Staff Writer John Gosch travels a lot, and the memories follow him. "I still see posters at the truck stops and restaurants. They are getting a little worn, but there's Johnny's picture. I tell the owners, 'The family appreciates what you've done.'" Gosch, a manager with a farm chemical company, doesn't identify himself as the father of the missing boy in the posters. He leaves quietly-Next stop, there'll likely be another aging picture of Johnny, another memory. Ten years ago, Johnny Gosch, 12, who was delivering the Des Moines Sunday Register, dropped from sight a few blocks from his West Des Moines home. The abduction on Sept. 5, 1982 and that of Des Moines Sunday Register carrier Eugene Martin, 13, across town on Aug. 12, 1984 has confounded local police, state and federal agents, private investigators, clairvoyants, weekend detectives and others. After hundreds of so-called leads, rewards that once totaled more than $200,000, file cabinets full of investigative reports, and now confessions of a man in a Nebraska prison, there have been no arrests, no suspects. Gruesome Puzzle The kidnappings remain one of the great crime mysteries of Iowa, a gruesome puzzle with many pieces that have stubbornly refused to fit together. "Johnny and Gene are probably a one-of-a-kind case," says John Rabun, vice president of the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, based in Arlington, Va. Department of Justice figures say that of the 3,200 to 4,600 abductions of children each year by strangers, most are short-term incidents. About 200 to 300 are kid nappings in which the child is kept overnight or is moved a long distance for ransom, kept permanently or killed. '. Gosch and Martin would be included in the smaller group, but likely would be in a much smaller sub-grouping, says Rabun. Authorities have not linked the cases, although they have many similarities. The boys were about the same age. They were delivering newspapers early Sunday in rest-dential neighborhoods. They were close to a newspaper drop where they had picked up bundles of papers. "These two cases are so close as to be identical," says Rabun, who has investigated hundreds of missing children cases. "There is a possibility Martin was a copycat of Gosch. But what happened to the boys essentially leaves more questions than answers." Braced for the Worst Noreen and John Gosch have braced themselves for the worst. "If he has gone through 10 years of pornographers and pedophiles as we've heard the stories, I hope he isn't alive," says John Gosch. "But on the other hand he is still our son. We'd love to have him back, but what condition he would be in is probably undesirable." The decade has left permanent scars. The Gosches haven't given up the search. Their frustrations are more obvious. They don't know how the story will end or if it ever will. In fact, says Rabun, the statistics show that the chances now of getting to the bottom of the abductions are very small, indeed. "Research shows that the window for successfully finding a stranger-abducted child plateaus up to one year. After that it's pretty much like falling off a cliff. It doesn't go to zero but gets pretty close," he says. Noreen Gosch says of the long search, "It's an earthquake that goes on for years. It doesn't leave you. It has trashed our lives. "Would we do it all over again? Probably. Are we sick of it? Definitely. Do we want a life? Yes. It would help us so much if we can GOSCH Please turn to Page 4B Romance Amid the Corn Dogs Couple wed where their love blossomed at the State Fair ByJOELSAMPAlO Register Staff Writer Margo Boicourt and Chris Fox met three years ago during the Iowa State Fair, where he was working at the National Guard booth. It was love at first sight, both say, and they took it all the way to the altar. A classical love story? Yes, with a touch of Iowa pride in the fair as the state's main event. Boicourt, 29, a native of Webster City who has lived in Des Moines for the last 1 1 years, is so crazy about the State Fair that she wanted to hold the wedding at the First Church on the fairgrounds. Fox, 26, of Johnston agreed. They tied the knot Saturday evening before a group of invited guests and a whole lot of curious fairgours surprised by the ceremony in the final weekend of the fair. To add a touch of even more originality, the bride, a loan officer in Johnston, wore an antique wedding dress. The groom, a sergeant at Camp Dodge, wore a World War II Army uniform for the occasion. Boicourt and Fox said they wanted to celebrate the lifestyle that the fair represents to many Iowans. Boicourt, who considers herself lucky to have met another big fan FAIR Please turn to Page 5 B New Methodist bishop has family roots in Iowa By WILLIAM SIMBR0 Register Religion Writer Chicago, HI. Iowa's new United Methodist bishop is a longtime Chicagoan whose life has been influenced by roots going back to the days of slavery on a Mississippi plantation and to a remarkable family in southeast Iowa. Relaxing in his office before preaching his next-to-last sermon as pastor of the black, middle-class St. Mark United Methodist Church on Chicago's South Side, the Rev. Charles Wesley Jordan, 59, pondered those roots, his Chicago past and his Iowa future. On Tuesday, Jordan will become the second black bishop to head the predominantly white Iowa Conference of 900 churches and 209,600 members. The first was Bishop James Thomas, who served from 1964 to 1976. Jordan will succeed Bishop Rueben Job, who is retiring. Jordan's late mother, Naomi, and her seven brothers and sisters were born in Fort Madison. He and his wife, Margaret, came to Des Moines Wednesday for a happy renewal of Iowa roots before they move. Jordan's cousin, Virginia Harper, 62, of Fort Madison, was inducted in the Iowa Women's Hall of Fame in ceremonies at the Iowa State Historical Building. The citation says she has been "an advocate for equality and justice for all Iowans." Harper was the first black woman on the State Board of Public Instruction and the Iowa Board of Parole. She has been president of the local chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People since 1978 and is active in a host of community projects. Jordan had begun packing for BISHOP Please turn to Page 3B !W!ftWti.iMMw U-Wi-Luii-Iimininwniiii.i mmnwipiMii m wwmmwmmmmmmwmwmmmwmw . ' Y t' ft I1 1 ) h A I " - Li . V. V The Rev. Charles Wesley Jordan greets parishioners outside St. Mark United Methodist Church Special to the Register in Chicago. Jordan will soon be taking over as Iowa's United Methodist bishop. m ,JL T "" ' M

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