Paul Clarke, Gleaner Writer
Extended family overjoyed at Olympic bronze medal
Warren Weir produced the sprint of his young life to break into the elite list of Olympians, when he finished third in the men's 200m final last Thursday and the young man from Refuge, Trelawny, instantly wrote his name in Jamaica's track folklore.
Even today, his relatives are still beaming in the quiet hilly community he once called home.
"I just could not believe what I was watching," said 89-year-old Lynhood Malcolm, Weir's great- grandmother told The Sunday Gleaner after the race.
"All I could do was cry, as I never could believe what I just saw my grandson doing. My grandson, Olympic medallist?" she beamed.
His grandaunt Beverly McDonald was also overjoyed. "When the race began I was just shouting 'Run, Turnbull, run!"
'Turnbull' is the pet name given to the young Weir by friends.
McDonald said that since he finished third in the Jamaican Olympic trials, she recognised that he could do something special.
"He was super. I can't say it any better. This is his first Olympics and he did extremely well for Jamaica and we are all so proud of him ... this child from Refuge," McDonald said.
Weir, a former 110m hurdler, switched to the 200m under the guidance of his coach Glen Mills at the Racers Track Club.
He was born in Falmouth, Trelawny, and lived in Refuge for a number of years with his mother before leaving the community to reside with his father in Portmore, St Catherine.
Little did they know the child they called Turnbull would become a decorated Jamaican Olympian.
Now, he is a champion in his own right according to his grand-uncle Felton Parris, who met The Sunday Gleaner team while he was heading home from work.
"I didn't even see the race because I was at work, but I did listen on the radio and when I heard that (Usain) Bolt was clear and (Yohan) Blake also there, I was listening to hear Warren's name.
"A little later, I hear dem say that him come in third. I was overwhelmed, man. I was so excited for him, happy that he did so well," said Parris.