Mack Robinson (athlete)

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Olympic medal record
Men's athletics
Representing the  United States
Silver medal – second place 1936 Berlin 200 m

Matthew MacKenzie "Mack" Robinson (July 18, 1914 – March 12, 2000) was an American athlete who won a silver medal in the 1936 Olympics. He was the older brother of Baseball Hall of Fame member Jackie Robinson.[1]

Mack was born in Cairo, Georgia, in 1914. He and his siblings were left fatherless at an early age, leaving their mother, Mallie Robinson, as the sole support of the children. She performed in a variety of manual labour tasks, and moved with her children to Pasadena, California, while the children were still young. Mack remained in town for school, and set national junior college records in the 100 meter, 200 meter, and long jump at Pasadena Junior College.[2]

He placed second in the 200 meters at the United States Olympic Trials in 1936, earning himself a place on the Olympic team.[3]:80 He went on to win the silver medal at the Summer Olympics in Berlin, finishing 0.4 seconds behind Jesse Owens.

Mack Robinson attended the University of Oregon, graduating in 1941. At the University of Oregon he won numerous titles in NCAA, AAU and Pacific Coast Conference track meets. He has been honored as being one of the most distinguished graduates of the University of Oregon and is a member of the University of Oregon Hall of Fame and the Oregon Sports Hall of Fame

For a time in the early 1970s, Mack was a park director of Lemon Grove Park, a park in the East Hollywood part of the City of Los Angeles.

Later in life, he was known for leading the fight against street crime in his home town of Pasadena. The Pasadena Robinson Memorial, dedicated to both Matthew and Jackie, was dedicated in 1997. The memorial statue of Jackie Robinson by sculptor Richard H. Ellis at UCLA Bruins baseball team's home Jackie Robinson Stadium,[4] was installed by the efforts of Jackie's brother Mack.[5]

Several locations are named in honor of Matthew Robinson. In addition to the Pasadena Robinson Memorial, the stadium of Pasadena City College was dedicated to him in 2000. That same year, the United States Postal Service approved naming the new post office in Pasadena the Matthew 'Mack' Robinson Post Office Building.[6]

Robinson died of complications from diabetes, kidney failure, and pneumonia, on March 12, 2000 at a hospital in Pasadena, California; he was 85.[7] He is interred at Mountain View Cemetery and Mausoleum, Altadena, California.



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