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The Manchester High School community last Friday (Oct.15) paid tribute to past student and Olympic gold medallist, Sherone Simpson at a special function held on the school compound.
In his address at the function, House Speaker and Member of Parliament for South Manchester, Michael Peart, lauded the athlete, who was part of the winning 4 X 100 women’s relay team. She also placed sixth in the 100-metre sprint.
“Today, we celebrate the triumph of one of our athletes who developed her skills right here at this school. On August 27, the entire Jamaica stood still for 41.73 seconds as we watched our women’s team create history in Athens. Sherone, on your quest to let the flag of Jamaica fly high, you have taught us valuable lessons of hard work, dedication and patriotism, qualities you have been portraying from a very tender age,” he stated.
He credited Sherone’s athletic success to the work of coaches Charlie Fuller; Messrs. Bolt, Holness and Williams (now deceased) and principal, Mr. Bryan.
Sherone entered Manchester High School in 1996, and during her seven years at the institution, she not only excelled academically but also participated in extra curricular activities. She was captain of the track and field team, a senior prefect and also a member of several school societies and clubs.
Mr. Peart noted that Sherone was a very active student who managed her time well and urged other students to emulate the very good example set by the young Olympian.
“Sherone’s achievements and overall approach to life is a wonderful guide. Welcome home Sherone. I am happy to know that you are continuing your education at the University of Technology where you are currently studying food services management. All the best for this and future endeavours,” he said.
In her reply, Sherone Simpson had high praise for the principal and staff of the institution.
“I have spent seven wonderful and memorable years here and I can say my track and field career started right at this institution and the support was always present. I tell you that nothing is impossible, I started at the bottom and now I have reached the top through perseverance and prayer,” she said.
She encouraged all athletes in the audience to stay focussed on their goals. “You too can make it as I did; just take your training seriously, be humble and I am sure that everything will come through,” she advised.