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Home 1984 Olympic Games
1984 Olympic Games - Page 7

Harry L. Usher, Executive Vice President/General Manger
Harry L. Usher, Executive Vice President/General Manger
The run-up to the Games was not all smooth sailing, however. Skepticism was widespread in the early years among local taxpayers, many of whom feared a deficit. Then in May, 1984, the Soviet Union announced that it would not be sending a team to Los Angeles. When they were joined by more than a dozen of their communist allies, it was open to question whether the Games would be successful.


When the Games opened on July 28, 1984, the Soviet Union and 14 of its allies were absent. However, one of their allies – Romania, a major sports power – defied the boycott by sending its team to Los Angeles. China returned to the Games for the first time in more than 50 years. The ensuing 16 days of competition were considered a marvelous organizational success and the “Olympic Spirit” infected all of Southern California in addition to a worldwide television audience. The Organizing Committee’s creative use of television and sponsorship revenues was hailed as a new financial model for the Games, and LAOOC President Peter Ueberroth was selected by Time Magazine as its “Man of the Year.”




 
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