Parting gift to Cayman HospiceCare from Compass sports editor
If you’ve run a mile, ridden a bike or kicked a ball in the Cayman Islands over the last eight years, chances are you’ve been photographed by Ron Shillingford.
The Cayman Compass’s veteran sports journalist, who bids farewell to the island next month, held an exhibition of some of his sports photography at Chelsea’s bar on West Bay Road on Monday night.
More than $1,000 was raised for Cayman HospiceCare through donations and the sale of the images.
Athletes, cyclists, softball players and plenty of sporting parents turned up to buy the pictures, donate to charity and say goodbye to the man who has been writing about and photographing sports events on the island for the better part of a decade.
“I was chuffed with the turnout,” Mr. Shillingford said. “It was great to share some of my pictures with Cayman’s athletes and get some value from them for a fantastic cause.”
Some of the most memorable moments caught on Mr. Shillingford’s camera have included boxer Charles “Killa” Whittaker’s title winning moment in 2011 and Usain Bolt’s 100m Cayman Invitational run in 2013. The Flowers Sea Swim, the Cayman Islands Marathon and the Irish Jog have also provided great images over the years.
But, for Mr. Shillingford, the local athletes, from the Olympic contenders to the weekend warriors, that fill the sports pages week after week are just as important.
“I’ve photographed them all multiple times, particularly the winners, but I’m still going to miss it,” he said.
Derek Haines, who made headlines for his charity marathon runs in support of the hospice, helped organize Monday’s fundraiser. He said Mr. Shillingford had made a fantastic contribution to sports in Cayman and would be sorely missed.
“I consider him a friend and I will certainly miss him; as I believe so will the population of Cayman. He has been a great asset to sports journalism.”
Danielle Coleman, director of operations and development for Cayman HospiceCare, said Monday’s event had been excellent, with a total of $1,150 raised.