Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Famed Chessplayer Fischer's Body Exhumed for DNA Sample and Reburied

I wasn't going to report this but Sis was right, this is important news regarding a world-renowned chessplayer - the first modern-day World Chess Champion who was an American, excluding Paul Morph.  Morphy, a young troubled American (sound familiar?) was considered World Chess Champion by some before the title became 'officially' established and before there was anything called FIDE which is something like d' Federicion Internationale d'Echecs.  It should be called the World Chess Federation. English IS still the language of international trade and exchange, is it not?  So why is the name of the international chess federation in French instead of English?  Who knows?  I sure don't.

People will be interested in this news. Here's the report that she sent me a few days ago, from CNN - I have since seen that it was one of the briefest and most factual available, with a minimum of sensationalism:

Chess icon's body exhumed in paternity case
By the CNN Wire Staff

July 6, 2010 11:42 a.m. EDT
The body of chess legend Bobby Fischer was exhumed Monday (July 5, 2010) in Iceland, law enforcement officials have told CNN. His body was reburied shortly after DNA samples were taken, the officials said.

Iceland's supreme court ruled last month in favor of a request by Jinky Young, Fischer's alleged daughter, to exhume his remains in order to settle a paternity question.

A doctor, a priest and other officials were present during the procedure, according to the police department in Selfoss, Iceland.

Fischer was 64 when he died in January 2008.

Fischer was a child prodigy and chess master by the time he was 15. He achieved international fame in 1972 when he defeated chess grandmaster Boris Spassky of Russia during the height of the Cold War, to become world champion.

The tournament was considered a symbolic battle between the two greatest powers in the world. It was held in Iceland, midway between the U.S. and the Soviet Union. Soviet chess masters had held the title since World War II -- until Fischer won. The victory, unequaled by an American since, was followed by tens of millions of chess fans around the world.

But Fischer's genius proved eccentric. Years after his historic win, Fischer gave up the title in 1975 and refused to defend it. He vanished and lived in a self-imposed exile for decades. He resurfaced in Yugoslavia in 1992 for a rematch against Spassky. It was another victory for Fischer, one that earned him $3.5 million.

But the U.S. government claimed Fischer's participation had violated UN sanctions against Yugoslavia, imposed to punish Serb leader Slobodan Milosevic, and revoked his U.S. passport.

Fischer again disappeared.

He was not heard from again until 2004, when he was arrested in Japan for traveling on an expired passport. When Iceland granted Fischer citizenship in 2005, he moved to that country and lived there until his death in a hospital.

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