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We lost a Washington Monument with the passing of Jim Vance

Brandy Simms Jim VanceLegendary WRC-TV news anchor Jim Vance lost his battle with cancer on Saturday. He was 75.
He was an icon, trailblazer, pioneer and a D.C. legend.
He influenced generations of broadcasters both local and national.
Magruder graduate and former Channel 4 sportscaster Dan Hellie shared the news desk with Vance before he left D.C. for the NFL Network in 2013.
“Sitting on the desk w/ Jim Vance is one of the great honors of my career,” Hellie posted on Twitter. “Genuine, loyal & smooth. A D.C. Treasure. Much love. RIP Vance.”

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NBA Draft is highlighted by two local former high school players

Markelle FultzMarkelle Fultz. FILE PHOTOThe first round of the 2017 NBA Draft was bookended by a pair of local products – Upper Marlboro’s Markelle Fultz and Silver Spring native Josh Hart.
The Philadelphia 76ers selected Fultz, a 2016 DeMatha graduate, with the first overall selection. Fultz, who attended James Madison Middle School in Upper Marlboro, became the first Prince George’s County product to ever be selected No. 1 overall.
“It is with great Prince George’s County pride that I congratulate Upper Marlboro’s very own Markelle Fultz on becoming the top pick in the 2017 NBA Draft,” Prince George’s County Councilman Mel Franklin said in a news release. “Markelle’s work ethic and determination are a result of his outstanding character and the wonderful influence of his family, especially his mother, Ebony Fultz, and the community that nurtured him. Markelle overcame being cut from his high school basketball team as a sophomore to become the country’s most sought after college talent. In three and a half years’ time, Markelle went from being a junior varsity high school basketball player to the top pick in the NBA Draft. Markelle, Prince George’s County congratulates you. We celebrate your incredible successes and are excited about the promise of your next great steps in the NBA. May God bless and guide your future, for the best is yet to come.”

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Remembering the legacy of Len Bias 31 years after his untimely death

Len BiasLen Bias. COURTESY PHOTOOn June 19, 1986 we were all shocked and saddened by the news that University of Maryland basketball star Len Bias – a Prince George’s County product – had passed away from a drug overdose at age 22.
Just two days earlier, Bias had been selected by the Boston Celtics with the second overall pick in the 1986 NBA Draft. He was destined for NBA stardom until tragedy struck on that fateful June morning.
Former Maryland guard Jeff Baxter, who was Bias’s roommate at the time of his death, described the chiseled 6-foot-8, 220-pound forward as a naturally defined physical specimen with no body fat.  “He was a docile person yet extremely aggressive on the court,” Baxter said.
Baxter was awakened by the news that Bias had fainted so he returned to their room to find his friend and teammate on the ground, motionless.

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The lingering legend of Montgomery’s Eugene Dyson

The legend of Eugene Dyson still lingers on in Montgomery County.

To this day, local folks still talk about the Churchill High School product when the debate shifts to the county’s all-time great student-athletes.

Dyson, a Scotland native who was a multi-sport athlete at Churchill in the 1980’s, had the Midas touch. He participated in football, basketball and baseball at the Potomac public school.

“Eugene was a beast,” recalled Todd Lancaster, a 1980 Rockville graduate. “He had a motor on him.”

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