December 25, 1978 12:00 PM

Fugiting, as usual, is what tempus does best. When last we saw Bob and Grace or Cliff and Linda—or any of the 2,000 men, women and children who appeared in PEOPLE during 1978—they were laughing, crying, soaring, skidding and all the fascinating things human beings do. What on earth (or in space) has happened to these newsmakers? We thought you’d never ask.

Raising quadruplets (age 5) plus an 8-year-old should be enough exercise for any mom. But Linda Schreiber (Oct. 23), a longtime runner, was pointing toward the 26.2-mile New York Marathon. She did exceptionally well, finishing 11th among 1,100 women entrants with her best time ever, 2:53:34. Then she and Jim, her lawyer husband, took a week in Bermuda away from her daily decathlon at home in Greenwich, Conn. “I want to go low-key for a while,” says Linda, 33. So she’s only running 12 miles a day—outdoors, that is.

“I got down so low I felt as if I wanted to die,” says Jefferson Starship singer Grace Slick, 39. After she quit during a European tour (Aug. 28), Slick decided “to communicate with the consciousness of spirit rather than the unconsciousness of ‘spirits.’ ” She is dry with the help of Marin County’s Alcoholics Anonymous, reading Michener, writing her autobiography and “rediscovering the excitement of every day.” As her daughter, China, 7, told her, “You’re finally having fun.”

So far, everything has been positive,” reports maverick actor Cliff Robertson, who opened a Pandora’s box (Feb. 20) with the news that Columbia Pictures President David Begelman had fraudulently cashed a $10,000 check with Robertson’s name. “I’m continually working,” says Robertson, now shooting a film, The Pilot, and soon to direct and star in Good Times, Bad Times. “It’s my usual quantum leap from role to role,” he quips, “this time from alcoholic pilot to headmaster of a boys’ school.” Recently elected to the board of the Screen Actors Guild, Robertson believes his actions in the Begelman case “put a few unsavory characters at the studios on notice that they will no longer get away with creative bookkeeping.”

Scott Finlay is on an uphill climb after a horrendous spill during last winter’s Canadian ski championships sent the Olympic hopeful to a hospital for brain surgery (March 13). Finlay, 22, is in a rehabilitation center in Kingston, Ontario. “His left side is very good, but his right side is still slow,” says Scott’s father, Hugh. The young man swims and while he still cannot speak, he acknowledges his nurses’ jokes. The best sign, says his father: “He now wants to do things for himself.”

Palo Alto, Calif. football coach Bob Peters tackled all the household chores for his wife last summer (Sept. 18), and nearly fumbled the job. “The story of my troubles helped a lot of people make major changes in their marital lives,” Peters, 39, says. He’s writing a book about the change in his. “I used to come home from an important game suffering emotional fatigue. This year I did something strange. I’d come home and start dinner.”

ASTRONAUT ANNA FISHER TAKES SOME GIANT STEPS FOR WOMANKIND

There’s nothing wrong with Anna Fisher that a few flaws wouldn’t cure. She is gorgeous, athletic, bright, a specialist in X-ray crystallography, an M.D.—and, as if that weren’t enough, one of the first six female astronauts picked this year by NASA (Feb. 6). Intolerably, she is also nice—a contented wife who still shares housework with her doctor husband, Bill, 32, and continues to enjoy depending on him the old-fashioned way. “I don’t know if that means I’m weak or just human,” Anna, 29, says, “but I need that. I feel very, very lucky to have a husband I love and who loves me, and to be a doctor—and when I think now I’m an astronaut too, it’s just incredible. A fairy tale.”

The two-year NASA training program based in Houston is rigor approaching mortis. Since moving there last summer from California, Dr. Fisher has been through a crash sea-and-land survival course in Florida and learned parachuting at an Air Force base in Oklahoma. She is now studying astronomy, celestial navigation and extravehicular activity (space walking). Fisher’s days at the base run 12 hours routinely; on her own time she keeps in shape with a four-mile jog every other day, weight lifting and racquetball. Starting next year, she will also begin practicing emergency-room medicine again to keep her primary skills honed. “It’s an intense time,” Fisher admits. “The only difference between men and women in the program is that we’re built smaller.”

The new astronaut has a couple of problems. She and Bill have been too busy to furnish their new house, and his work as an emergency-room physician in Alabama and Florida means a lot of travel. But “We have a more regular schedule than when we were both doing emergency-room work,” Anna insists—and, despite a $27,000 cut in her income (she gets $23,000 as an astronaut), they’ve both found the money for flying lessons. Last month Anna soloed. They also ski, canoe and scuba dive. Bob once joked they could wind up doing Wheaties commercials. A better bet is Geritol.

Weary from months of worldwide touring to plug his controversial book, In His Image: The Cloning of a Man, author David Rorvik (April 17) retreated to a mountain farm near San Francisco. He did not retreat, however, from his claim of authenticity for his work. “Wealthy people have written me by the hundreds asking to clone people in their image,” Rorvik says. “I am not encouraging them.” Among his upcoming projects is a magazine interview with Uganda’s dictator Idi Amin—who could well rate as the man the world would least like to see cloned.

It started with a New Year’s party at which comic Richard Pryor was said to have threatened his wife (now ex-fifth wife) Deboragh and mortally wounded a Buick owned by a guest (March 13). An unamused California judge ordered him to perform 10 charity benefits and report to a probation officer once a month. Despite his troubles, Pryor finished two movies this year, The Wiz and California Suite. Next year he will direct something titled, of all things, Shooting from the Heart. Pryor has a new girlfriend whom he won’t identify but for whom he has plans this Dec. 31: “to make love the old year out and into the new one.”

Model Melanie Cain, 23, finds herself cast in a major role in a real-life Blow-Up. A material witness in the slaying of her fiancé, John Tupper, 34, for which her ex-lover, Buddy Jacobson, 48, has been charged (Sept. 11), Melanie has come out of seclusion to resume her career—but only with round-the-clock police protection. The notoriety hasn’t helped: She’s doing mostly catalogue work rather than plum fashion layouts or magazine covers. The bodyguard upsets some ad agencies and photographers. Says one of Melanie’s colleagues: “I know a model who was fired just for bringing her poodle to the set. Anything that disturbs or distracts has a negative effect.”

“Getting clear” in the jargon of Scientology (membership: 4.5 million) means freeing oneself of “traumas.” It is also the legal goal of the cult’s top U.S. official, Henning Heldt, and 10 of his colleagues, who will stand trial in February on 24 charges, including bugging and burglarizing government offices (Aug. 14). Says Heldt’s lawyer: “We’ll definitely go into the government’s misconduct and improprieties. We expect to win the case.”

For Judy Carne, the year was like a bucket of cold water. The Laugh-In star was fitted into a steel cage (Aug. 7) to mend a broken vertebra suffered in a car crash. Judy earlier was busted on drug charges (and acquitted) three times. She repaired to—and at—her parents’ home in England. The cage came off in September, and hairstylist Jon Barratt became her beau. Judy is angling for a U.S. TV special on women’s lib and a series, but meanwhile she got soaked again. Her $1,000 check for a pop festival appearance bounced.

After Terry King learned she had terminal cancer, she and her husband, Ian Glass, wrote about her impending death in the Miami News (March 27). When she died, says Glass, “I was a blithering idiot.” Now on leave from the newspaper, he is writing a novel called Terry, My Love. He says, “I made a pledge I would kill myself when Terry died, but she said, ‘You can’t do that.’ I’m glad I didn’t.”

Comes spring and a giant panda’s fancy turns to love. Or so hoped officials at Washington’s National Zoo (July 17), who’ve wanted a baby ever since Hsing-Hsing and Ling-Ling arrived from China six years ago. Thinking Hsing might be too fat to be interested in mating, zoo officials reduced his intake. Darned if he didn’t gain 15 pounds.

At 22, she gracefully accepted the notion that she was growing “old” for her sport and that “young and fearless girls will advance gymnastics further.” Olga Korbut retired after getting married last winter and now has the best possible reason for giving up the parallel bars and the balance beam: she’s six months pregnant. Olga, who won three gold medals in the 1972 Olympics, is the wife of Leonid Bortkevich, 28, lead singer for Russia’s top folk-rock group, Pesnyary (Jan. 23). She sometimes travels with Leonid and between trips is redoing their three-room apartment in Minsk to prepare for the baby, due in March. Afterward Olga plans to return to her sport as a coach. “Although patience is not her main quality,” a gymnastics official frankly admits, “she has experience, courage and children adore her.”

“Well,” sighs Chicago principal Paul Adams, whose all-black school, Providence-St. Mel, was threatened last summer with closure, “we didn’t go under.” But it’s a squeaker. Adams himself ran bingo games to raise $41,000. Another $190,000 came in after PEOPLE reported (July 3) the archdiocese decided it could not afford the 272-pupil (60 percent non-Catholic) high school. Now, says Adams, “It all depends on fund raising.”

Gunfire in Georgia left Hustler founder (and born-again Christian) Larry Flynt paralyzed from the hips down (March 20). Despite his confinement to a wheelchair, he and wife Althea recently moved their publishing empire from Columbus, Ohio to L.A. “I’ll walk,” vows Flynt, 36, who hopes to be on crutches by January. “It’s just a question of whether it’ll be on land or water.” The quip is not meant to be blasphemous. He stays in touch with his religious mentor, Ruth Carter Stapleton, and says, “The shooting made my faith stronger. I could not have pulled through without it.”

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