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Farewell, Sylvester ‘Scobie’ Taylor

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05.MAR.10

EDITOR: I write to say FAREWELL to Sylvester “Scobie” Taylor following his passing and to thank him for his contribution towards the total development of Football in SVG. He was the driving force behind the 1979 stalwarts who placed 2nd in the CFU Tournament, forever branding our nation as a force to be reckoned with. This giant of a man made the presidency of football a prestigious position that all who followed after tried their best to emulate but have always fallen short. He came from a time when there were no money grants from FIFA for development, so he had to look for donations and sponsorship throughout the business community – this he did tirelessly, with his main recognition being able to say “I did it”, and he did it extremely well.{{more}}

In our small country, it is a shame when one of own can go to his final resting place without the recognition he deserves from the new generation. Where were the present President and National Team on Saturday? Why was football being played at the national level on the same evening? This was a total lack of respect for Scobie, after his lifelong contribution to the sport he cherished and developed to the levels which are being enjoyed today. Historians stress that one must know where we came from in order to know where we are going. This man paved the way from his playing days to his presidency and his guidance after for players like myself to always strive for higher standards. All of this in turn filtered down to the present generation.

After the funeral, the Methodist Church annex came alive with reflections of yesteryears when soccer was played for enjoyment and accomplishments from the heart and the intense rivalries of teams at the Victoria Park. It’s a pity no youngsters were there to gain insights into becoming more determined players without using money as a motivating force. It was a fitting end to a great man, so let me share my deepest memory of him by remembering the proud look on his face when he told me that he had met and discussed soccer with the greatest of them all, Pele, and Jack Warner was his personal friend. That’s the look I will maintain when I speak to anyone of him.

Goodbye , my friend, and may you rest in peace.

Midge Ballantyne
Former National Player

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