Today’s Google Doodle celebrates Canadian track and field runner Harry Jerome’s 79th Birthday. “Never give up” was a fitting proverb for Harry Jerome, the Canadian athlete who broke hindrances as he broke records. Today’s Google Doodle, represented by Toronto-based visitor artist Moya Garrison-Msingwana, portrays the statue of Jerome that stands in Vancouver’s Stanley Park. That city likewise has the annual Harry Jerome International Track Classic, a meet named in honor of the champion sprinter.
Who was Harry Jerome?
Harry Winston Jerome, OC was a Canadian track and field sprinter. He was the grandson of John Howard, a railway porter who represented Canada in the 1912 Summer Olympics.
Born in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, Harry Jerome moved to North Vancouver at age 12. In 1970 he was made an Officer of the Order of Canada. His sister, Valerie Jerome, was additionally an Olympian who gone after Canada at the 1960 Summer Olympics in Rome.
Harry Winston Jerome broke a Canadian record for the 220-yard race at age 18, soon gaining an athletic scholarship to the University of Oregon. His grandfather John “Army” Howard had been the first black athlete to represent Canada in the Olympics. Harry Jerome and his more youthful sister Valerie both carried on the family legacy, traveling to Rome to contend in the 1960 Olympic Games.
Albeit a pulled muscle kept him from running in the finals, Harry Jerome proceeded to represent Canada at two progressively Olympic Games, winning the bronze medal in 1964. He additionally won gold medals in the Pan American Games and Commonwealth Games. Beginning in 1960, Harry Jerome would equal or break four world sprinting records through the span of his career.
In 1969 Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau invited Harry Jerome to help set up Canada’s Ministry of Sport. He was awarded the prestigious Order of Canada in 1971 and later named British Columbia’s Athlete of the Century. Motivating youthful athletes of color to seek after their fantasies and accomplish their fullest potential, Harry Jerome traveled across Canada holding sports clinics for secondary school students.
His life inspired the narrative film Mighty Jerome and his legacy is celebrated every year with the Harry Jerome Awards, which perceive greatness in Canada’s black community.
Here’s to a champion who never surrendered.
Harry Jerome passed on of a brain aneurysm on December 1982, at 42 years old.
In 2001, Harry Jerome was accepted into Canada’s Walk of Fame.