Eddison “Eddie” Hinds was born on the 30th of April 1954 and grew up in Longwood District, Santa Cruz, St. Elizabeth, under the care and guidance of his father Edward Herman Hinds, a Bookkeeper at Appleton Estate, and his mother Joyce Mary (Thomas) Hinds, a teacher at Santa Cruz Primary School. Whilst in primary school, Eddie’s father would occasionally snatch him out of school to take him up to Munro College, where they watched important football encounters between Munro and Cornwall College. Consequently, he entered Munro College in 1965, and his success in football flowed naturally. His mother’s keen interest and activity in the community also injected itself into Eddie, as we shall soon discover.
At Munro, Eddie began as a day boy from 1965 to 1968, he further boarded from 1969 to 1973. During his years at school, Eddie became the President of the Student’s Council, House Captain of Coke/Farquharson, Deputy Head Prefect, President of the Sixth Form Association, Captain of the DaCosta Cup football team, and an avid member of the ISCF. The influence of Messrs Richard Roper, Steve Harle, and Ken Walton (a fellow inductee today) saw Eddie being a part of the successful under 13 football (Elron Cup) and under 15 football (Galloway Cup) teams. He also spent four years representing Munro in its DaCosta Cup teams. It must be mentioned that Eddie was a consummate “Padda Hog” who fortified his shoes with springs for traction.
On leaving Munro College in 1973, he embraced the “real world”. Eddie was initially employed at ALPART as a laboratory technician, but resigned after three months to join the National Youth Service. It was here that he taught general science and physical education at Lacovia High School. Also, in 1973, he founded and led the Longwood Youth and Community Enterprise Organization. Eddie organized unemployed youth from the community, and used land provided by the Ministry of Agriculture’s “Land Lease Project” to create a play field, a community centre, a bakery, and a peanut farm. The projects prospered as they provided both training and employment opportunities. They also generated income to fund the sports programmes. When Eddie entered UWI to study Government under the likes of Carl Stone, Trevor Munro and others, his work with the youth of Longwood did not cease. It continued, for a solid foundation had been laid. Many of the young people established their own businesses and some migrated to continue to seek more progress elsewhere. This exposure would explain why Eddie would switch from the Faculty of Natural Science to the Faculty of Social Science, as this is where his passion led him.
Before establishing the sports programme at Longwood, Eddie represented the Santa United Football Club. His team won the Parish Competition and was promoted to the National League. This Longwood football team would go on to win the National League as well. It was at this stage that the new National Coach of the Jamaica Football Team went “talent hunting“ and selected Eddie for the National Football Squad in 1974. At this point in time, he had just entered UWI. With this newfound opportunity, he was able to train for the Pan American Games in Mexico. His selection for the team, earned him a report in our local newspaper which stated,”Eddison Hinds who replaced Errol Gillette, gave a courageous display in nullifying the Mexican danger man, Noverette”.
Whilst at UWI, he was elected the Chairman of Chancellor Hall. He represented the football teams of Chancellor Hall, The UWI and Cavalier. During 1977, whilst being busy with his academic work at UWI, his Alma Mater spirit called him. He went to Munro to coach the DaCosta Cup squad. Over a period of 3 months, he drove EVERY Day, every week (Monday to Friday) from UWI to Munro and back, to coach. On his way back, Eddie would purchase vegetables in Top Hill, drive them back to Kingston, and sell them to the Cafeterias on Campus before attending classes. This marathon was at least 60 days and 15,000 miles – the distance Columbus would have sailed west from Spain to China if the Americas had not got in the way.
After working with the Government in Kingston, Eddie returned to Longwood in 1979. He married Yollette McLeggan, a Hamptonian and the sister of Munronians David and Courtney (“Shearer I & II”). Eddie and Yollette are now going forty-four years of marriage. They have two children, Edward, who attended Munro College and Andrea who attended Hampton School. Also they serve as proud grandparents to Chloe, who is in third form at Hampton and Solae, who is in first form at Immaculate.
In 1981, Eddie and Yollette started their own family businesses. These include a bakery, restaurant, flower shop and LPG filling plant. And nowadays, even in Eddie’s so-called retirement, he is immersed in real estate development in Longwood. Eddie operated the filling plant and is now into real estate development, whilst Andrea operates the bakery. For several years the bakery provided patty & coco bread for Thursday lunch at Munro, a south after favourite for many students. Eddie served as a member of the management of the Jamaica 4-H Club, the Board of the Transport Authority, the Board member of Black River High School and predictably, the Board of Munro College Board of Management.
His ISCF immersion at Munro has blossomed into serious undertakings at St. Matthews Anglican Church in Santa Cruz where, as Rector’s Warden, he has strengthened the appeal of the Church in the community, especially among the youth. Eddie is truly a good man for his ability to draw the youth to God and Service.
In 2000 and 2001, both the Goshen Sports Complex and the St. Elizabeth Football Association awarded Eddie Hinds for his “Long and Dedicated Service to Football”.
Today, for the above and other reasons, we proudly induct Mr. Eddison Howard Hinds into the Munro College Old Boys Association Hall of Fame.