Olympic gold medal winner jams

The following is an excerpt from an article published at TheIndependent.com:

What is one way to make sure your life goals are reached?

Apparently winning an Olympic gold medal helps.

OK, maybe that’s not the easiest route to take, but it sure seems to be working for Curt Tomasevicz.

The Shelby native and 2010 Winter Olympics gold medalist in the four-man bobsled checked another life goal off his list on Monday night when he sat in with Pearl Jam for the final song of their stop at Kansas City’s Sprint Center.

Tomasevicz’s chance to jam with one of the top rock acts of the past 20 years was set into motion last month.

It was during an appearance at Grand Island Central Catholic, part of his recent tours of schools throughout the area. Because, really, what is a cooler treat for students than have an Olympic gold medalist from Central Nebraska stop by?

Chris Golka, who was Tomasevicz’s CCD teacher at Shelby, had heard in one of his TV interviews that he had three life goals. One was to win an Olympic gold. He didn’t need any help reaching that one.

Another was to throw out the first pitch at a Chicago Cubs game. That is set up for June.

The other one was yet to be met. Tomasevicz wanted to play with Pearl Jam.

During his stop at GICC, Tomasevicz was surprised by Golka and her daughters Sarah and Katie with a signed and framed Pearl Jam poster and an offer from the band to be a guest at a concert of his choice.

Monday was the night.

After Pearl Jam had rocked the arena for 26 songs, it was time for Tomasevicz to make his rock star debut.

Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder, who is known to occasionally butcher his own lyrics, took great care to correctly pronounce “Tomasevicz.” It isn’t the easiest thing to do after singing for two hours plus while lubricating the vocal cords every now and then with his ever-present bottle of wine.

And Tomasevicz got a new nickname from Vedder, who called him “the (naughty language) man for the bobsled team.”

Vedder then clarified: “He didn’t say he was the man. But he is the guy in the back who pushes. So he’s the (naughty language) man.”

Tomasevicz came onstage with gold medal wrapped around his neck. He was given a bass guitar, and the now seven-man band launched into Pearl Jam’s traditional show closer “Yellow Ledbetter.”

Tomasevicz had on a smile a mile wide standing just a few feet from guitarist Mike McCready. Vedder was allowed to wear the Olympic gold medal for a while after the song was wrapping up and McCready segued into “The Star Spangled Banner,” which resulted in a solid “U-S-A” chant from the crowd.

Click here to read the entire article.


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