On 5th July 1975 American tennis player Arthur Ashe became the first black tennis player to win the Wimbledon singles’ championship. He has already won two other Grand Slam titles at the US Open (1968) and the Australian Open (1970)!
In the early 1979 Arthur Ashe contracted HIV from a blood transfusion he received during his heart bypass surgery. In 1992 he announced that he had been suffering from AIDS since 1988. He began working to educate others about HIV/AIDS founding the Arthur Ashe Foundation for the Defeat of AIDS and the Arthur Ashe Institute for Urban Health. He died from AIDS-related pneumonia on 6th February 1993.
His website at arthurashe.org begins with the quote : “True heroism is remarkably sober, very undramatic. It is not the urge to surpass all others at whatever cost, but the urge to serve others at whatever cost.” and makes your realise what a hero this remarkable man really was! Do read his website for details of his amazing life, what he achieved and the legacy he left behind! This includes the Arthur Ashe Stadium which was named after him because he won the inaugural US Open in which professionals could compete in 1968. A stadium seems just about the right size to celebrate a man of his stature!