• U.S.

People: Aug. 27, 2001

4 minute read
Amanda Ripley


First KERRI STRUG saved the U.S. Olympic gymnastics team by sacrificing her ankle in a heroic one-legged vault in 1996. Now the gold medalist is sacrificing her summer to rescue the reputation of the country’s interns. Strug has been filing, faxing and copying–and nothing else!–for Republican Senator John McCain at his Capitol Hill office. “Thousands of interns come in and go out each summer,” says Strug, who graduated from Stanford in June with a communications degree and will return this fall for grad work. “Most people are very professional. Girls just have to be careful. There are risks in every city, every job. I think we need to encourage young people to be here.” Strug’s trademark chipper voice has not changed, rounding out her perfect score for intern earnestness. Originally from McCain’s home state of Arizona, she came to work for the Senator because “he follows his ideals instead of party lines.” The two may have something else in common: Strug says she doesn’t know which party she prefers.


Just in time for the fourth anniversary of her death this month, PRINCESS DIANA’s martyr status was reaffirmed last week. First, a dishy book on her sons came out, revealing that Prince William has for years been bringing “tall, leggy blonds” home to his suite at St. James’s Palace, for what in Britain is referred to as “tea,” claims author Christopher Andersen. Simply shocking behavior from a 19-year-old who expects to be the King of England and was nicknamed “DDG”–for Drop-Dead Gorgeous–by his mum. More surprising perhaps was a report in the conservative, well-regarded Spectator magazine that the frosty Queen has grudgingly given her approval for PRINCE CHARLES to marry his longtime mistress, CAMILLA PARKER BOWLES. If the rumors are true, it would mean the Queen has abandoned years of scrupulously pretending Camilla doesn’t exist–which in Britain is referred to as proper. The marriage could occur as soon as 2003, according to the story. Finally, and most bizarrely, one of the few humans connected to Diana who did not cash in on her death, the man she called “my rock,” was charged on Thursday with pilfering 342 pieces of clothing, kitchen tools and other trinkets from Diana, Charles and William. PAUL BURRELL, 43 (the butler, naturally, with Diana in January 1997), insists the mementos were given to him out of affection. There must have been a lot of love there, as the bounty includes a postcard to William signed by that other prince among men, David Hasselhoff.


It’s time to forgive the ISLEY BROTHERS for Shout. They have done what Bar Mitzvah DJs everywhere cannot; they’ve moved on. Last week Ronald and Ernie’s Eternal album hit No. 3 on the Billboard Top 200 chart, and they found themselves sandwiched between boy bands who could have been their grandchildren–if only they were better musicians. Teen-pop compilation Now 7 and ‘N Sync’s Celebrity rang in at Nos. 1 and 2, but Ronald Isley, 60, has his eyes on them. “I study everybody,” he said from his Missouri country home. “I listen to Lil Bow Wow, because that’s who I have to knock off the charts. Sometimes I hate it, but it’s what I have to do.” The R.-and-B. godfathers can claim hits in five decades in a row. When they weren’t being covered by the Beatles (Twist and Shout) or sampled by Notorious B.I.G. (Big Poppa), they were being plagiarized by Michael Bolton (Love Is a Wonderful Thing), the highest compliment of all.

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