Olympic gold medalist and Olympic record-holding long jumper Robert “Bob” Beamon is coming to Cayman this week for Special Olympics Cayman Islands’ signature fundraising golf tournament and awards evening.
American long jumper Beamon leapt into the record books during the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City. The then 22-year-old’s record 29 feet, 2½ inches jump stands as an Olympic record to this day, nearly 50 years later. The Olympic record also stood as a world record for 23 years before being broken in 1991.
After retiring from competitive track and field, Beamon continued to be involved in sports and youth development, including fundraising for the U.S. Olympic Committee.
The Special Olympics Ambassador is coming to Cayman for a weekend of activities to raise funds for Special Olympics Cayman Islands, according to a press release from organizers.
On Friday, Jan. 20, Beamon will attend the 6th Annual Cayman National Eric Crutchley Memorial Golf Tournament, SOCI’s major fundraiser for the year.
On Saturday, SOCI volunteers will be recognized during the Unsung Heroes Gala at the Kimpton Seafire Resort.
SOCI is also hosting Special Olympics North America Regional Sports Director Greg Epperson, Maura Daley of Special Olympics International, and Frank Wheaton, Beamon’s lawyer, who is also an athlete, journalist and actor.
SOCI Chairman Adrian Lynch said in the release, “We are thrilled to be able to host Mr. Beamon and the team from Special Olympics North America and SOI,” adding, “not only do we appreciate the support for our fundraising efforts, but for the volunteers who make our programmes possible the international recognition is a major boost.”
During his time in Cayman, Beamon will also deliver a “Unified” motivational speaking clinic on Thursday afternoon at the Truman Bodden Sports Complex. The clinic is being organized by Invictus Sports Club, and will include SOCI and mainstream athletes from local athletics clubs and high schools.
For members of the public interested in participating in the Cayman National Eric Crutchley Memorial Golf Tournament, a few tee times are still available for both the morning and afternoon starts, organizers said. Contact Seamus Tivenan at [email protected] or Kim Short at [email protected] to register a team.
Tickets for the Unsung Heroes Gala are $150 per person or $1,500 for a table of 10 and can be reserved by emailing Adrian Lynch at [email protected]