BELIZE CITY–Still active veteran footballer and music/cultural activist 65-year-old Vincent Albert “Winty J” Johnson vented his frustration with the Director of Sports this morning at our sports desk. “I have been living in Mahogany Heights since 2006,” said Winty J, “and I have begged the Sports Director repeatedly for help with a couple goal posts, and he has steadfastly refused to help us.”
Winty said this has not stopped his community from organizing football games for the youths. “From time to time, we cut some sticks and make goal posts, but the wood rots and breaks after a while; and the field is not all grass, so the football also wears out quickly on the sand.”
The Mahogany Heights village was first settled under a PUP administration, and Winty J wondered if that has anything to do with the poor response he has received from the National Sports Council. “This is not about PUP and UDP; this is about football and the youths,” he continued. “Right now we need a pair of metal goal posts, a football, and a lawn mower to keep the grass down. Presently, we are using machetes, but it would be much better with a lawn mower.”
Yesterday, there was a friendly football game in Mahogany Heights, where a visiting team from the Mesop area in Belize City, led by Bernard “Dubu” Thomas, defeated the Mahogany Heights squad. “It was a nice game,” said Winty J; “and we need a lot more of that for the youths in the village.”
If any concerned individual would like to assist the ‘ballers in Mahogany Heights, Winty J can be contacted at cell number 635-0724 or email [email protected]
Mugger Day September 14?
Turning to another matter, 1960’s football star Nelson “The Roo” Robinson is expected back in the country later this week, according to Winty J, and they are looking at Sunday, September 14, as the possible date for another “Mugger Day” celebration in Belize City. The first Mugger Day was held last year on September 15 at the St. Martin’s (Third World) football field. “For sure, Hogman (Wayne Olivera) will be there,” added Winty, “and many people don’t know that The Roo is Hogman’s uncle. Hogman’s mother, who passed a couple months ago, was the Roo’s sister.” Small world.
Winty also commented on the number of former footballers that we are losing at a relatively young age. “The Mugger Day anniversary is coming up soon,” he said, “and already, Gene Guild, who made a song for the Mugger last year, died suddenly (on July 1 of this year at 58 years); and just recently also, a relatively young man known as ‘Walidad,’ who organized the last Mugger Day in New York, reportedly passed away.” We reminded Winty also of the passing of former Spurs footballer Eric “Kizzaro” Kisling at 63 years a couple weeks ago on August 18 in New York. “Maybe we’re eating too much chemicalized food,” wondered Winty, who credits his “Ital” eating habits for helping to control his weight.
Queen’s award for the Mugger?
Winty J also promised to give us more details on a special award by the Queen (of England) that the Mugger was supposed to receive in 1964, but never did. We look forward for that, and to the next Mugger Day.