William David Tatum
Founder, Jamaica Flyers, LLC.
Email: wtatum@jamaicaflyer.commailto:wtatum@jamaicaflyer.comshapeimage_4_link_0
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During the year 1946, Joseph Yancey, Coach and Co-Founder of the New York Pioneer Club, had to find an Island in the Caribbean that would reflect the greatness of Track running to the world community. The Olympic games would be arriving in 1948. How to enlarge on the tradition of Jesse Owens and other men and the women of color who had distinguished themselves on the world stage of athletics? The vexing question was resolved by turning the attention to the island of Jamaica, West Indies.

Through the grapevine of the track legends, it was revealed that on the Island of Jamaica, W.I. several great rumors had emerged under the most onerous of social and economic conditions.
What was the social context in America at the time? In the year 1948, President Harry Truman would desegregate the Armed Forces of the United States! A. Philip Randolph as the great leader of the negro labor movement had demanded in 1941 that the defense industry be integrated. Pleas from the wife of President Roosevelt to persuade Mr. Randolph to call off his March on Washington proved fruitless. In June 1941 President Roosevelt issued an executive order ending discrimination in the defense industries.
Nine years would have to pass before children of color would attempt to enter the high school in Little Rock, Arkansas. The National Guard was called out to protect Negro children from armed mobs seeking Negro blood for daring to get out of their assigned place and seek an education. Voting by the people of color in the Southern United States was simply out of the question.

Given the harsh American domestic conditions, Joseph Yancey grasped that the Island of Jamaica, W.I. contained a unique spirit of controlled revolt against grievous and sustained injustices perpetrated over countless centuries.

Joseph Yancey perceived that a method of change in the social and economic political spectrum could be changed for the better through a dynamic performance by colored athletes at the Olympic Games of 1948. Future achievements in all arenas of life not only for Jamaicans but others irrespective of race or national origin..................continuedOrigins_of_Jamaica_Flyers_2.htmlshapeimage_12_link_0

James Gathers,  Thomas Beach,

Dick Williams and Frank Bowens