Dave Roberts and David Robinson passed on memories of Jackie Robinson to students at John Muir High School

Manager Dave Roberts and the Los Angeles Dodgers hosted 60 John Muir High School softball and baseball players Monday at Dodger Stadium for a celebration of Jackie Robinson on his 103rd birthday.

Roberts hosted the event and he was joined via video conference by David Robinson, one of Jackie and Rachel’s three children. Roberts and the youngest of three children Robinson shared their take on the famous Dodgers icon.

” It’s a real treat. First of all, the Dodgers want to welcome you here. I remember being your age and having the opportunity to talk to Major League players and NFL players. So for me to be where I am right now, watching you guys and watching the man behind me, it’s going to be a special day,” Roberts began.

“I think part of my job and the thing that gives me the most joy with my job is being a storyteller. I think you know the name Jackie Robinson and its impact, but to hear it from me and his son David, it’s going to be really rewarding, exciting and it’s also going to equip you to tell the story yourself.

“That’s what creates a legacy and ultimately that’s history. For me to be the first man of color to lead the Dodgers, and also to be bi-racial and to be of Asian descent, that means a lot to me.

David shared inspiration and life lessons learned from his father, specifically emphasizing acts of service and kindness over monetary accomplishments.

“We had a trophy room in our house. Quite a substantial piece, the display case had all sorts of baseball awards, there was a gold plated shoe,” Robinson recalled. “At the back and around the room were plaques, and all of these plaques spoke of being given in recognition of service, in recognition of loyalty, in recognition of sacrifice, in recognition of contributions to development.

“I’ve had the opportunity in my life to be blessed with a good dose of wealth, a good dose of power and to have been in the presence of presidents, to have been in some of the most expensive hotels , from being around rich people. Nothing has ever lived up to the significance of the words on these plaques. I couldn’t see any dollar amounts.

“My dad never became a rich man and his goal was never to get rich. Wealth was not a problem in the 40s, 50s, 60s and 70s. Development, what you did for your next, for your race and therefore for humanity, these were the stakes. This is what I learned from my father, this generation and this time.

“I hope young people can make up their minds today, because there are a lot of distractions in this world and a lot of focus on material gains. Wealth is given a lot of credit, when in fact , the most valuable thing my father taught me was the value of service.

Celebrating Jackie Robinson Day

Every April 15, Major League Baseball celebrates Jackie Robinson Day and his retired No. 42 jersey. This year marks the 75th anniversary of Robinson breaking the color barrier.

“I think it’s a good thing,” Robinson said of his father’s recognition each season. “If you’re able to retire and be honored and carried in special ceremonies by all baseball players, you’re brought back.

“How much more glorious can it get than that? I know that more honor and respect will be given to #42 in the years to come.

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