Bahamas Mourns Thomas Robinson, National Sporting Hero
Above: Thomas A Robinson with China’s Wang Lequan at the handover of the Thomas A Robinson National Stadium last year (BIS Photo)
By the Caribbean Journal staff
The Bahamas is mourning the death of Thomas A Robinson, one of the country’s national sports heroes.
Robinson, for whom the Bahamas’ National Stadium is named, passed away Sunday after a long illness.
“Tommy’s passing is a great loss for our nation,” Prime Minister Perry Christie said. “As a pioneer of international track competition for the Bahamas, Tommy was the elder statesman of Bahamian athletics. He was a sporting hero of truly legendary status.”
Christie, who called Robinson one of his “oldest and dearest friends,” pointed to Robinson’s appearance in teh 1958 Commonwealth Games in Cardiff, as the sole entrant from the Bahamas.
It was at Cardiff that Robinson won a gold and silver medal in sprinting.
“Tommy’s performances at these games represented a singular moment in our life as a people,” he said. “What he achieved had never been done before.”
Robinson represented the Bahamas in four Olympic Games, with his final appearance at Mexico City in 1968.
He was the first-ever Bahamian to hold a world record, when he set the world indoor 300 metres record at an event in Canada.
“Thomas Augustus Robinson is an icon for the ages now,” Christie said. “He will continue to stand as a singular example of the greatness that can be attained in any area of human endeavour.”
A state-recognized funeral will be held for Robinson, the date of which has not yet been announced.