Sun | Dec 9, 2018

Burrell's endless passion

Published:Wednesday | June 21, 2017 | 11:20 PMNodley Wright
The Gleaner's front page from June 4, 1998 showcase then Prime Minister PJ Patterson and members of the Jamaican delegation to the FIFA World Cup in France ahead of their departure.

Burrell's endless


"What we dreamed he dared," was how communications specialist and a man who played an important role on Jamaica's historic journey to the 1998 World Cup, Curtis Myrie described the former Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) president, Captain Horace Burrell.

"This was a guy whose passion increased increasingly, if you could ever say such a thing. It had a multiplying effect," Myrie continued in his description of the former JFF president, who died earlier this month.

Burrell's boundless energy, Myrie said allowed him to do what ordinary men could not even think of.

"Burrell was prepared to get up and go at a time when most men would get tired and would wait on another day to continue. If it meant not sleeping then he would do it, if it meant that it took just pressing on with what he believed then he would do it. He would find the extra energy," said Myrie who charted the social marketing course for the Federation and the 1998 World Cup campaign since 1995.

Myrie also likened Captain Burrell to a bull.

"One could use the analogy, which he would not like, of a brazen bull, who would just keep charging. That is Burrell. Burrell's passions, I believe, was piped from a source of unending will. It was very difficult to tell him to try another route, try another way. Once his heart and mind were set on another way, you would not be able to stop him,

"Leading up to the 1998 World Cup he just refused to believe that this was beyond us and he refused to be deterred. He refused to believe that all opposing view. His passion never ceased," explained Myrie.

According to Myrie he became associated with Burrell and the 1998 campaign when he told Burrell in no uncertain terms that the advertising approach being undertaken was not cutting it. Instead of going out of his area of expertise to challenge Myrie's position, the former army man instead challenged Myrie to come on board and chart the course.

"How I came in on the 1998 World Cup journey was my saying to him once that you cannot make the same appeal, this same kind of match advertising. I told him that you have to engage social marketing appeal. The fraternity that supports football must become the country. He challenged me to come on board and do their PR. I told him no, I am a journalist but I will do your marketing.