Ches Atkins devoted more than 40 years to the betterment of athletics within Newfoundland and Labrador. A constant worker at a variety of positions,
He first became involved with the sport in 1950 when he assumed responsibility for making certain that all the equipment required for various track and field events and road races was in good shape and ready where and when it was needed.
His dependability was such that he was elected to the board of directors of the Newfoundland Branch of the Amateur Athletic Union of Canada which was the governing body for a variety of different sports but especially track and field. He served as assistant-secretary, secretary and vice-president for the organization until it was dissolved in 1980 when the provincial athletic association came into being.
He moved quickly into the operations of the new organization and continued to make valuable personal contributions to sport, again especially track and field events and distance races. He was a working individual at road races and track meets at the Feildian Grounds, Bell Island and at the King George V Park on a regular basis.
In fact, he was a regular participant in the organization and operation of just about every event connected with track and field for more than 30 years, working hard and well with the other individuals who provided the opportunity for local athletes to perform in the sport. He made important and valuable contributions to track meets and road races.
During its first 23 years or so the AAU of C was responsible for several other sports in addition to track and field and Atkins was involved in organizing and judging swimming, fencing and weightlifting. His major contributions however were within track and field as it was the AAU of C that kept the sport alive locally.
He served on the selection committee for the provincial athletics hall of fame during its first two years of operation. He also contributed to the community as a member of the Royal St. John´s Regatta Committee while being deeply involved in many aspects of the Church Lads Brigade.
Copyright © NLAA 2021