NSHOF historic first induction dedicated to Walter Cronkite

Morgan Freeman. National Sailing Center & Hall of Fame (NSHOF)
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The National Sailing Center & Hall of Fame (NSHOF) will celebrate the induction of 15 sailors into the National Sailing Hall of Fame during ceremonies that will be dedicated to the memory of Walter Cronkite (1916-2009). The familiar broadcast journalist was an avid sailor and served as Honorary Chair on the NSHOF Board of Advisors for close to three years.

Recognizing both Cronkite's contributions to American sailing and this historic occasion, the NSHOF website is currently featuring the mobile-compatible, two-part series America's Cup: Cronkite Reports, which chronicles, race by race, the 1987 America's Cup campaign, a watershed event in American sailing. A two-minute clip can be seen on the NSHOF home page, Facebook page and YouTube Channel.

The American actor Morgan Freeman, an avid sailor, was named recently as Chair of the Honorary Advisory Board, filling the position left vacant by Cronkite.'I am honored to be part of the National Sailing Center & Hall of Fame as we create a home for American sailing,' said Freeman, emphasizing that he knew how important the endeavor was to Cronkite. 'My love for sailing started at an early age, and there is nothing like being carried away by the wind and waves.'

Freeman’s passion for sailing started with his first sail aboard a Lightning on a reservoir near Stowe, Vermont, in 1967. He soon moved up to larger boats and ocean sailing. 'If you live a life of make-believe, your life isn't worth anything until you do something that does challenge your reality,' he said. 'And to me, sailing the open ocean is a real challenge, because it's life or death. There's no quarter.'

This weekend in San Diego, the National Sailing Center & Hall of Fame (NSHOF) will celebrate the induction of 15 sailors into the National Sailing Hall of Fame during ceremonies that will be dedicated to the memory of Walter Cronkite (1916-2009). The familiar broadcast journalist was an avid sailor and served as Honorary Chair on the NSHOF Board of Advisors for close to three years.

Recognizing both Cronkite's contributions to American sailing and this historic occasion, the NSHOF website is currently featuring the mobile-compatible, two-part series America's Cup: Cronkite Reports, which chronicles, race by race, the 1987 America's Cup campaign, a watershed event in American sailing. A two-minute clip can be seen on the NSHOF home page, Facebook page and YouTube Channel. To go directly to the series in the NSHOF Film Library, click hereAmerican actor Morgan Freeman, also an avid sailor, was recently named Chair of the Honorary Advisory Board, filling the position left vacant by Cronkite.'I am honored to be part of the National Sailing Center & Hall of Fame as we create a home for American sailing,' said Freeman, emphasizing that he knew how important the endeavor was to Cronkite. 'My love for sailing started at an early age, and there is nothing like being carried away by the wind and waves.'

Freeman’s passion for sailing started with his first sail aboard a Lightning on a reservoir near Stowe, Vermont, in 1967. He soon moved up to larger boats and ocean sailing. 'If you live a life of make-believe, your life isn't worth anything until you do something that does challenge your reality,' he said. 'And to me, sailing the open ocean is a real challenge, because it's life or death. There's no quarter.'

The Hall of Fame Inaugural Induction will take place at 1:00 p.m. on October 23, 2011, at the San Diego Yacht Club. Although Freeman will be unable to attend the Induction due to scheduling conflicts, all of the living Inductees will be present:

National Sailing Hall of Fame Inductees : US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics Paralympic Coach and five-time Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year Betsy Alison (Newport, R.I.); surfboard industry pioneer Hobie Alter (Laguna Beach, California); 1998 Whitbread Round the World Race winning skipper Paul Cayard (Kentfield, California); four-time America’s Cup winning skipper Dennis Conner (San Diego, Calif.); naval architect and America’s Cup winning skipper Ted Hood (Portsmouth, R.I.); sailor, author and Emmy-award winning sailing commentator Gary Jobson (Annapolis, Md.); 1972 Soling Olympic Gold Medalist Buddy Melges (Zenda, Wisc.); 1968 Star Olympic Gold Medalist and founder of North Sails Lowell North (San Diego, Calif.); and America’s Cup winning helmsman and four-time Rolex Yachtsman of the Year Ted Turner (Atlanta, Ga.).

National Sailing Hall of Fame Posthumous Inductees: Transatlantic Race record setter Capt. Charles 'Charlie' Barr (Marblehead, Mass.); naval architect Capt. Nathanael G. Herreshoff (Bristol, R.I.); two-time America’s Cup winning skipper Emil 'Bus' Mosbacher, Jr. (Greenwich, Conn.); the first-ever singlehanded circumnavigator and noted writer Joshua Slocum (San Francisco, Calif.); yacht designer Olin Stephens (Hanover, N.H.); and three-time America’s Cup winning skipper Harold S. Vanderbilt (New York, N.Y.).

The next group of NSHOF inductees will be announced in July 2012, and through 2013 the number of inductees will not exceed 15. Beginning in 2014, the Selection Committee will induct a maximum of five sailors each year. For more on the individual accomplishments of the 2011 Inductees, please visit: 2011halloffamers.nshof.org

About the NSHOF: The National Sailing Center & Hall of Fame is a not-for-profit educational institution dedicated to: preserving the history of the sport and its impact on American culture; honoring those who have made outstanding contributions to the sport of sailing; the teaching of math, science and American history; inspiring and encouraging sailing development; and to providing an international landmark for sailing enthusiasts. The NSHOF has partnered with US Sailing and the U.S. Naval Academy, and is associated with the Herreshoff Marine Museum, Sailing World, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, the Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Water Trail, the Congressional Cup, Hudson River Community Sailing, Young Mariners Foundation and yacht clubs throughout the country in its efforts to recognize role models of outstanding achievement. For more information on the NSHOF, please visit: www.nshof.org

National Sailing Hall of Fame Inductees (alphabetical list):

Betsy Alison (Newport, R.I.)Hobie Alter (Laguna Beach, Calif.)
Capt. Charles 'Charlie' Barr (Marblehead, Mass.)
Paul Cayard (Kentfield, Calif.)
Dennis Conner (San Diego, Calif.)
Capt. Nathanael G. Herreshoff (Bristol, R.I.)
Ted Hood (Portsmouth, R.I.)
Gary Jobson (Annapolis, Md.)
Buddy Melges (Zenda, Wisc.)
Emil 'Bus' Mosbacher, Jr. (Greenwich, Conn.)
Lowell North (San Diego, Calif.)
Ted Turner (Atlanta, Ga.)
Joshua Slocum (San Francisco, Calif.)
Olin Stephens (Hanover, N.H.)
Harold S. Vanderbilt (New York, N.Y.).