Yo-yoing is an activity that almost every child has attempted in his or her lifetime--most likely unsuccessfully. It requires skill, concentration, and determination. A single mistake can mess up an act, causing the yo-yo to unravel and tangle. It's a craft that is highly complex and nearly dominated by males in the advanced levels.
That didn't stop Linda Sengpiel of Akron, OH. Born in 1934, her parents knew early on she had a skill with her new toy. At the age of 23, Linda entered the Duncan Yo-Yo Championship where she was the only woman against 499 guys. She won. Her prize? A boy's bike.
Her skill include lighting matches with a spinning yo-yo, knocking poker chips out of ears, and juggling when yo-yoing in one hand and throwing with the other.
She has been interviewed by various famous faces: Captain Penny, Barnaby, Bozo the Clown, and Diane Sawyer. She has appeared on international TV, including the Japanese show We're Number One in 1982. When talking about Linda, the producer of the show commented that "the States have the most interesting material. There are so many different people."
She died on April, 13, 2001 at the age of 57. She taught people that "small accomplishments give you confidence to achieve big accomplishments. That's what it's all about."
Rest in peace.