JIS News

Jamaican born aviator, Captain Barrington Irving, has joined the ranks of famous black achievers to be inducted into the African American Research Library and Cultural Center in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
This is the latest honour for the young pilot, who was last month conferred with the Order of Distinction in the rank of commander at the National Honours and Awards ceremony held at King’s House.
The induction ceremony was held following a recent community salute at the Samuel Devoe Park located on the grounds of the historic library to honour Captain Irving’s pioneering achievement, as the youngest and first person of African descent to circumnavigate the globe.
A 23-year old senior at Florida Memorial University in Miami, majoring in aerospace, the young aviator completed his historic world mission in June this year, traveling more than 26,000 miles for 97 days across 27 countries in a single engine Cessna.
At the function, he was presented with the library’s Lifetime Achievement Award and received proclamations from the City Commissions of Lauderdale Lakes and Lauderhill as well as the Broward School Board.
Addressing the audience of primarily school children and well-wishers who came to celebrate his achievement, Captain Irving spoke briefly about his travels, at the same time encouraging the youngsters to set high standards to achieve excellence. He stressed the importance of having a mentor, noting that he was guided by Jamaican pilot, Captain Gary Robinson, who introduced him to the aviation industry.
He also spoke of his plans to expand his Experience Aviation Learning Center to Broward County, which he started last year at the Opa-Locka Airport in Miami, to get more young people involved in the aviation industry.
Earlier that day, a pedestrian bridge at the Park Lakes Elementary School was renamed the Barrington Irving Bridge of Educational Excellence, in support of the young pilot’s message of perseverance and motivation to students to pursue their dreams and take advantage of their education.
The library, which is celebrating its 5th anniversary, is one of three such institutions in the United States focusing on black heritage, culture and literature. The other institutions are the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in Harlem, New York, and the Atlanta Auburn Avenue Research Library on African-American Culture and History in Georgia.
Among the 75,000 shelved books and reference material by famous black authors at the library, are titles by former Prime Minister, P.J. Patterson; late folklorist and cultural icon, Louise Bennett-Coverley; and the readings of National Hero, Marcus Garvey.
The library also houses a wide range of subjects relating to Caribbean culture, heritage, government and development, politics and literature.

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