“I could say a lot about this man but he was truly one of my heroes in life, anyone who knows me or has heard me talk about him knows how much he has influenced me in my life. , how close we were and what it meant to me. To say that he will be greatly missed is an understatement.
Before being injured in the semi-final, Derrick was one of Team Great Britain’s brightest medal hopes in Spain.
He qualified fastest in the first round and won his quarter-final, continuing the form he showed last year as part of the 4x400m relay squad that won gold at the world championships. was
But, as he crossed the 250m mark for his semi-final, Derrick tore his hamstring – his second straight Olympic disappointment after injuring his Achilles four years ago.
As his competitors crossed the line, Derek lifted himself off the floor and began to walk alone to the finish line until his father came out of the stands, distracting the stewards, to help.
Photos and clips of Jim comforting his son as he crosses the finish line in a standing ovation have since become famous and used as symbols of the ‘Olympic spirit’.
Tributes poured in from around the sporting world for Jim, who later became a torch bearer at the 2012 London Games.