The passing of Donnie DeFreitas – A tribute by the SVGOC
by Keith Joseph
It is with great sadness that the St Vincent and the Grenadines Olympic Committee (SVGOC) acknowledges the passing of Donnie De Freitas, a former President of the organisation and of the St Vincent and the Grenadines Table Tennis Association.
Donnie passed away early on the morning of Friday 22 May 2020 in Fiji, where he was employed at the time.
During his engagement in sports administration, Donnie transformed Table Tennis in St Vincent and the Grenadines. In 1990, he was elected president of the SVGOC, a position he held until he left local shores in 1997 to take up an appointment in St Lucia before eventually moving across to the Pacific where he resided until his passing.
Donnie oversaw the systematic revision of the SVGOC’s Constitution and established an administrative and operational structure which served the institution well for decades. Under his watch the SVGOC facilitated a National Sports Consultation that was held at the Jaycees Complex, Stoney Ground, Kingstown, 17 – 19 May 1991. He also led the SVGOC’s hosting of a Regional Sports Administration Seminar, funded by the Malaysian government, 11 – 14 January 1993.
During his tenure Donnie also oversaw the SVGOC’s hosting of the Annual Sports Awards until it fell under the ambit of the National Lotteries Authority.
An astute sports administrator, fluent in Spanish after having done is degree in Cuba, Donnie De Freitas made an indelible impact on the Olympic and sports movement of St Vincent and the Grenadines, the Caribbean and the Americas. We are all overwhelmed by his death.
The SVGOC’s Executive and entire membership extend sincere condolences to his family, immediate and extended.