Born in the town of Cairo, Georgia on January 31, 1919 arose an American hero that single handedly revolutionized the world of baseball forever. Jack Roosevelt Robinson, son to single mother Mallie Robinson, was the first African-American to play Major League Baseball. Despite the cruelty and hardships, he broke the color barrier; thus changing the game of baseball as the world knew it. Robinson attended John Muir High School and Pasadena Junior college. Dedicating his school years to sports—basketball, football, baseball, and track—he was an astounding athlete in all aspects. In 1983, he was named region’s most valuable baseball player. His inspiration was his brother Matthew Robinson, who had won a silver medal in the 200-meter dash at the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin. Continuing his education, he began attending the University of California, Los Angeles. Robinson was the first student in the school’s history to win varsity letters in every sport. Due to lack of money, Robinson was forced to leave UCLA in 1941. He then moved to Honolulu, Hawaii and played football for the Honolulu Bears. Unfortunately, his season with the Bears was cut short due to the start of World War II. Serving as second lieutenant with the United States Army from 1942-1944, Robinson never saw any combat. He was arrested and court-martialed during boot camp as he refused to move to the back of a segregated bus. Later, the charges were dropped and he received an honorable discharge. Little did Robinson know, his actions against segregation changed his future forever. After Robinson was discharged from the Army, he played on a Negro baseball league. Robinson was requested by Branch Rickey, manager of the Brooklyn Dodgers, to discuss signing him to play on the all-white baseball team of the Montreal Royals, a Dodger farm team. Robinson met with Rickey in New York on August 28, 1945. Rickey chose Robinson not only because of his athletic abilities, but because of the stand he...
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