Man Indicted in Jack Shea's Death


Lake Placid, N.Y. April 5, 2002 (AP)--A man was charged with vehicular manslaughter Thursday in a January car crash that killed Jack Shea, a 1932 gold medal speedskater and patriarch of the nation's first family with three generations of Olympians.

Herbert Reynolds, 36, of Saranac Lake, N.Y., was previously charged with driving while intoxicated. On Thursday, a grand jury indicted him on the manslaughter charge, felony criminally negligent homicide, two misdemeanor counts of driving while intoxicated and several traffic violations.

Reynolds's attorney, Greg LaDuke, said he would mount a vigorous defense against the entire indictment.

Shea's son, Jim Shea Sr., said the family did not want to get involved.

``We'll just let justice do its normal course,'' said Shea, who competed in three skiing events in the 1964 Innsbruck Games.

Reynolds' van slid out of control and hit Shea's car on a road outside of the village of Lake Placid. Police said Reynolds's blood-alcohol level at the time of the crash was 0.15. The legal limit is 0.10.

Shea, 91, died of internal bleeding the next day. He was America's oldest living Winter Olympics gold medalist, winning the 500 and 1,500 meters in 1932.

Shea's grandson, Jimmy Shea, won the gold medal in skeleton in the the 2002 Salt Lake City Games.

The vehicular-manslaughter charge carries a maximum sentence of two to seven years. The other felony carries a maximum sentence of one to four years.

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