California bowler overcomes disability to compete in USBC Women's Championships


    United States

    National Bowling Stadium in Reno, Nev. (March 16 - July 2, 2006)

    2006USBCWomensChampionshipLogo.jpg As double amputee Jean Farr of Tustin, Calif., wrapped up her third game of Division 2 team play May 31 at the 2006 United States Bowling Congress Women's Championships presented by the Eldorado, Silver Legacy and Circus Circus, she couldn't help but think, "here we go again."

    Farr, 76, of the Tustin Aces, wears two prosthetic feet, which somehow managed to fail her - again.

    "I was bowling very poorly 'til the last game, about the ninth frame," Farr explains. "After I rolled the ball, I turned and as I did, I heard something click and the prosthesis starting digging into my right shin bone. So I hobbled back to the settee area, telling myself, 'I have one more frame, and I'm going to finish the game.' So when my turn came, I got up and thought, 'Hopefully I only have to throw one ball or two balls.' As it was, I threw a strike and knew I had to throw another ball. Then I threw another strike and I had to throw yet another ball. I ended up with my highest game, which was 154. I should have done that in the first game and I'd have had a good series."

    The manufacturer of Farr's prosthetic feet claim the devices - constructed of the same carbon fiber used to make wings for 747 jets - cannot be broken. Farr begs to differ.

    "There's a little tiny crack. The specialist who provided the prostheses said I've broken everything else he's given me - six sets of feet in six, seven years. Now he's got feet that have a metal thing going all the way from the toe to the heel, that has a wedge, a lift, so that when I step down, this wedge adapts to my walking. He built the legs I have on, so my feet are splayed, like a duck waddles, which was supposed to give me balance sideways. Because right now, I have no way of stopping myself from going forward, backward or sideways - it's like being on stilts, with no upper control. When I called him this morning and told him that his invention didn't quite work, he couldn't believe it."

    Farr had games of 140 and 103 to go along with her 154 game. Teammate Ginny Snodgrass, with whom Farr has bowled for more than 40 years, also had a bit of bad luck when she arrived in Reno.

    In the hotel lobby, Snodgrass, 85, tripped over another bowler's bag and fell, ending up with a bloody nose and what she thinks may be an injury to her wrist. Even then, Snodgrass rolled 130, 116 and 155 in team competition with her friend Farr.

    "My wrist didn't start hurting until about an hour later," says Snodgrass, who at least was able to pick up her Women's Championships plaque commemorating 25 years of national tournaments. Both women credit Tustin Aces teammates, especially Rocena Pulsipher, whose scores of 169, 157 and 160 buoyed their wounded women bowlers.

    Farr lost her feet in 1994, through a series of unfortunate circumstances. While in the hospital for back surgery, her doctors discovered an aortic aneurysm. Subsequent complications from the surgery resulted in the loss of her feet five weeks later.

    Returning to bowling proved to be a saving grace for Farr, who's been at it since the late '50s. A 14-year member of the Orange County Women's Bowling Association, Farr works four days a week as a league coordinator at Tustin Lanes, where she discovered the Bowlers to Veterans Link (BVL) campaign to send portable bowling lane kits to GIs in Iraq, Afghanistan and other distant dispatches. With concerted efforts and an ability to rally other bowlers, Farr rounded up $4,000 and sent 14 bowling kits to Iraq.

    Through it all, Farr, a mother and grandmother who's been married to husband Jim for nearly 18 years, remains a glass-is-half-full kind of lady.

    "I have people walk up to me who I've never met before in my life and say, 'You are such an inspiration,' a label that might make some people uncomfortable.

    "Not anymore," she says without hesitation. "I'm not uncomfortable with any of it anymore."

    Kegel is the official lane maintenance provider of USBC.

    Top five division leaders with hometowns and pinfall:


    Team (946 average and over)
    1, Strike 3, Sun City, Ariz., 3,021. 2, C&S Bowling Supply I, Plainfield, Ill., 2,946. 3, Laurel Bowl, Johnson City, N.Y., 2,917. 4, Valley Bowl Pro-Shop, Spokane, Wash., 2,911. 5, Keller Williams Realty 2, San Antonio, Texas, 2,895.

    Doubles (379 average and over)
    1, Carrie Meares, Seneca, S.C./Lisa Wagner, Duluth, Ga., 1,331. 2, Dianna Innerst, San Jose, Calif./Cathy Johnston, Folsom, Calif., 1,274. 3, Cherylle Secl-Cross, Marne, Mich./Carole Morgan, Wyoming, Mich., 1,263. 4, Bonnie Vaughan, Englewood, Ohio/Rae Parks, Vandalia, Ohio, 1,234. 5, Nicole Van Deventer/Laurie Clark, Sioux Falls, S.D., 1,231.

    Singles (190 average and over)
    1, Shannon Duplantis, New Orleans, 707. 2 (tie), Valerie Carrillo, Montebello, Calif., and Dawn Convay, Las Vegas, 691. 4, Lisa Wagner, Duluth, Ga., 683. 5, Alisha Caballero, Riverside, Calif., 678.

    All Events (190 average and over)
    1, Lisa Wagner, Duluth, Ga., 2,097. 2, Lisa Stevens, St. Charles, Ill., 1,991. 3, Kelly Borysiewicz, Franklin Square, N.Y., 1,989. 4, Nikki Lunsford, Plainfield, Ill., 1,967. 5, Patti Gleason, Palatine, Ill., 1,928.


    Team (846-945 average)
    1, Village Bar II, Omaha, Neb., 2,842. 2, Washington Mojo, Ferndale, Wash., 2,818. 3, Cavalettes 1, Sacramento, Calif., 2,811. 4, The Queen Bs 1, Loveland, Colo., 2,807. 5, BeauBien Street Saloon, Troy, Mich., 2,781.

    Doubles (339-378 average)
    1, Pam Schulz, Longview, Wash./Valery Hubbard, Kelso, Wash., 1,264. 2, Irma Day, Helotes, Texas/Julie Howard, San Antonio, Texas, 1,223. 3, Deidre Hicks, Morris, Ill./Joyce Underwood, Marseilles, Ill., 1,215. 4 (tie), Tonya Justinger, Painesville, Ohio/Marina Rimes, Madison, Ohio and Tracey Shaud, Fairlawn, N.J./Elissa Gotta, Kenosha, Wis., 1,203.

    Singles (170-189 average)
    1, Kristine Kiesling, Las Vegas, 686. 2, Wynn Brandon, Reno, Nev., 676. 3, Paula Hallead, East Wenatchee, Wash., 674. 4, Casea Little, Longview, Wash., 670. 5 (tie), Dawn Jessie, Atlanta and Jean Almaria, Lexington, Ky., 662.

    All Events (170-189 average)
    1, Maika Winkler, Antelope, Calif., 1,856. 2, Christel Butler, Kannapolis, N.C., 1,853. 3, Holly Fett, Las Vegas, 1,852. 4, Kristine Kiesling, Las Vegas, 1,804. 5, Wynn Brandon, Reno, Nev., 1,802.


    Team (746-845 average)
    1, Jax 1, Jacksonville, Fla., 2,734. 2, The X Effect, Purcellville, Va., 2,692. 3, Southern Girls V, Pomona, Calif., 2,690. 4, Centennial Lanes 2, Hays, Kan., 2,658. 5, Team 20022, White Bear Lake, Minn., 2,640.

    Doubles (299-338 average)
    1, Sharon Cassidy, San Mateo, Calif./Elaine Van Otten, Pacifica, Calif., 1,171. 2, Kim Illhardt, Seguin, Texas/Janice Kuhen, San Marcos, Texas, 1,169. 3, Jeanna Brown, Bloomington, Ill./Joan Kaufman, Heyworth, Ill., 1,154. 4, Darcy Netz, Blue Lake, Calif./Linda Scott, Eureka, Calif., 1,143. 5, Deborah Nowak-Frick, Walkerton, Ind./Pat Dukarm, South Bend, Ind., 1,141.

    Singles (150-169 average)
    1, Judith Kaufman, Winslow, Ill., 620. 2, Julie Andres, American Canyon, Calif., 619. 3 (tie), Joyce Moss, Columbus, Ohio and Linda Urbanek, Poway, Calif., 616. 5, Bonnie Magnussen, Wyoming, Ill., 615.

    All Events (150-169 average)
    1, Shelley Hall, Long Beach, Calif., 1,774. 2, Nikita Williams, Oakland, Calif., 1,767. 3, Becky Carter, Anaheim, Calif., 1,741. 4, Pearl Cates-Bullock, Durham, N.C., 1,735. 5, Cheryl Blosch, South Wayne, Wis., 1,705.


    Team (651-745 average)
    1, Unbowlievables, Meridian, Idaho, 2,530. 2, Idaho Pick-Up Gals, Pocatello, Idaho, 2,501. 3, Just Marked, Oakland, Calif., 2,458. 4, D.C. Rollers Team 3, Brentwood, Md., 2,449. 5, The Happy Hookers, Mesa, Ariz., 2,418.

    Doubles (261-298 average)
    1, Ronda Lutz, Paris, Idaho/Teresa Singleton, Montpelier, Idaho, 1,083. 2, Anne Greer, Rainier, Ore./Alonnie Bolton, Oakland, Ore., 1,075. 3, Sandy Jackson, Minden, Nev./Sylvia Griffin, Detroit, 1,072. 4, Vivian Bisinger, Floyds Knobs, Ind./Kathy Smith, Greenville, Ind., 1,068. 5, Jamie Huyser, Kearney, Neb./Connie Huyser, Johnson Lake, Neb., 1,062.

    Singles (131-149 average)
    1, Nancy Galinat, Harrold, S.D., 638. 2, Linda Gearhart, Casa Grande, Ariz., 620. 3, Robin McGinnis, Petrolia, Pa., 598. 4, C.C. Deaky, Los Angeles, 596. 5, Carmen Trader, Defiance, Iowa, 593.

    All Events (131-149 average)
    1, Jennifer Reed, Hamilton, Va., 1,680. 2, Stephanie Dowd, El Paso, Texas, 1,644. 3, Jen Helton, Huachuca City, Ariz., 1,609. 4,Veronica Dugenio, Branchburg, N.J., 1,608. 5, Ginger Engel, Pahrump, Nev., 1,601.


    Team (650 average and under)
    1, Bear Nasty, Monticello, Minn., 2,187. 2, North Idaho Crushing II, St. Maries, Idaho, 2,111. 3, Tumbleweed Lanes, Ness City, Kan., 2,096. 4, Lundeen Ford, Annandale, Minn., 2,091. 5, Alley Cats, Calimesa, Calif., 2,080.

    Doubles (260 average and under)
    1, Sylvia Harris, Washington, Pa./Judith Lee, Coal Center, Pa., 1,005. 2, Kathy Belmer, Manteca, Calif./Regina Antunes, Stockton, Calif., 973. 3, Jenna Cameron/Debra Ingram, Springdale, Ark., 962. 4, Sharon Carroll/Dee Carroll, Newport, Wash., 945. 5 (tie), Lorna Robinson/Holly Rybensky, Omaha, Neb. and Dorothy Gabbard, Camden, Ohio/Michelle Poe, College Corner, Ohio, 941.

    Singles (130 average and under)
    1, Barbara Dynes, New Castle, Ind., 593. 2, Rose Postle, Rice Lake, Wis., 554. 3, Connie Monk, Yelm, Wash., 549. 4, Tracy Goodson, Belen, N.M., 546. 5, Shelly Bloch, Ramsey, Minn., 538.

    All Events (130 average and under)
    1, Linda Azuma, Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif., 1,491. 2, Carol Hood, Waterville, Kansas, 1,490. 3, Connie Monk, Yelm, Wash., 1,481. 4, Kristine Ferguson, Greenville, Mich., 1,475. 5, Michele Burzinski, Soldotna, Alaska, 1,447.