Thu | Dec 12, 2019

10 know about Maxine Walters

Published:Sunday | April 28, 2013 | 12:00 AM
Maxine Walters

Maxine Walters is known and celebrated internationally as a raconteuse with an acerbic tongue that can make the most stoic personality wilt.

Her stint as an Air Jamaica hostess earned her a fierce reputation among those who made their job difficult.

Considered a social legend and an inspirational front-runner, she is regarded as the epitome of island beauty and elegance, emerging as a social and cultural force at a time when the preferred modus was to laud and welcome all things foreign.

Since the heyday of Air Jamaica, Walters has taught Production for Feature Films at several universities in the Caribbean for 12 years. Today, Outlook Magazine shares 10 things we did not previously know, about the trailblazing entrepreneur and social icon, Maxine Walters.

1 Was an all Jamaica Junior singles and doubles tennis champion and still remains a tennis fiend, going to either Roland Garros or the US Open every year.

2 With Peter Fraser as her dance partner, they won the 6th Form Association competition dancing the cha-cha - and believes today they could win 'Dancing with the Stars' with their cha-cha moves.

3 Was one of the first 50 Air Jamaica flight attendants and worked the first flight that ever left the ground in the first-class galley of the DC8 stretch flying NYC to Kingston. "We were so slow, we still haven't served coffee or tea yet."

4 Lived in San Francisco where she scored a first by modelling sarongs designed by her under the AKanga's label, in 17 different stores in California. Also modelled and partied with Hugh Hefner at the Playboy Mansion in Chicago in the 1970s, for an Air Jamaica promotion which turned out to be a revelation of how the other half lived.

5 Co-wrote and sang One Light four Wheel with Janet Enright - a song about the dangers of cars on the road with only one headlight, featuring Sly and Robbie on drum and bass. It made the Top 10 on the Jamaican charts and did very well in England.

6 Was associate producer of the TV series 'Going to Extremes' which is the highest position ever held by a Jamaican on an American TV show which was featured in the NY Sunday Times in a page-and-a-half article about the series on Sunday August 30, 1992.

7 Was one of the five founders of Reggae Sunsplash along with Tony Johnson, Don Green, Ronnie Burke and John Wakeling. While doing the PR which made the music festival into a household name, she also appeared on Reggae Sunsplash twice - once doing The Kanga Show and the other, singing One Light Four Wheel. That song was the first and only record produced on the Reggae Sunsplash label.

8 She is a passionate collector of Jamaican dancehall street signs, and has exhibited some at the Jamaican Embassy in Havana Biennial, Hartford, Connecticut and Miss Lily's restaurant in NYC. She also published a book of Jamaican dancehall street signs, with all proceeds going to the Consie Walters Cancer Care Hospice.

9Her all-time favourite Jamaican song is By His Deeds, by VC.

10 Along with Nansi and Virginia Burke, produced and staged the Bob Marley Float for the Caribbean Independence Day Parade on Eastern Parkway in New York City in 1979. Also danced on stage with Bob Marley along with Nansi and Virginia Burke at a concert at the Brooklyn Museum that same year. She has also danced with Prince Charles at the opening party of the 1966 Commonwealth Games at the then newly opened National Arena.

- CFJ