A Robinson Family Weekend
Pasadena celebrates the lives and accomplishments of Jackie and Mack Robinson
By Mabel P. Aragón 07/17/2014
The city of Pasadena will join in honoring Olympic medalist and former Pasadena resident Matthew “Mack” Robinson and his brother Baseball Hall of Famer Jackie Robinson this weekend.
Lesser known than his younger brother, who broke Major League Baseball’s “color barrier” in 1947, Mack Robinson received worldwide recognition when he won a silver medal in the 200 meters during the 1936 Olympic Games held in Berlin, the capital of Nazi Germany.
The Robinson Family Weekend celebration kicks off at 9 a.m. Friday with a ceremony at the Pasadena Robinson Memorial in Centennial Square, across the street from City Hall, 100 N. Garfield Ave., where giant busts of the brothers were dedicated in 1997. Included will be special presentations by members of the Robinson family, personal reflections and a musical selection, as well as a Mack Robinson photo and memorabilia display.
Born in Cairo, Ga., in 1914, Mack Robinson died of complications from diabetes, kidney failure, and pneumonia on March 12, 2000. He would have turned 100 on Friday.
Jackie Robinson, the youngest of five children, was born on Jan. 31, 1919 in Cairo and died from a heart attack at age 52 on Oct. 24, 1972.
Pasadena City College, where the brothers rewrote the school’s sports record books in the 1930s, will join the commemoration from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday with a small reception at Creveling Lounge. The college is located at 1570 E. Colorado Blvd. Local dignitaries and community members are expected to attend.
The Robinson Family Weekend concludes on Sunday when the Baseball Reliquary inducts Rachel Robinson, Jackie Robinson’s wife, into the Shrine of Eternals during a special ceremony in the Pasadena Central Library’s Donald Wright Auditorium. The library is located at 285 E. Walnut St.
Delano Robinson, wife of Mack and Rachel’s sister-in-law, will accept the induction on Rachel’s behalf. Other inductees are baseball pitcher and broadcaster Dizzy Dean and baseball infielder and coach Don Zimmer.
“It’s an honor to celebrate the feats of these winning athletes,” Jarvis Emerson, director of the Jackie Robinson Center, said of the brothers. “We appreciate what they did for the world of sports.”
For more information, visit the city of Pasadena’s Web site cityofpasadena.net.