Inducted May 24, 1975
Chester Lawrence was born at Channel, Port aux Basques on April 7, 1911. He moved to Corner Brook in 1926 and was associated with the pulp and paper industry there until his retirement. He and his wife, the former Margaret Hamilton of Waterford, Ireland reside at Corner Brook. Chester continues to show a lively interest in all sports activity.
Chester Lawrence first came to prominence as an athlete of talent and versatility at the Championship sports held at St. John’s in 1932. As a one-man team representing Corner Brook at that meet he performed sensationally. In the 220 yard event he ran that distance in 24-1/5 seconds surpassing his friend Gerry Halley’s then existing record of 24-2/5 seconds. He entered four other events that same afternoon capturing all four. Indeed a very impressive afternoon’s work. That he was capable of still further and more sensational feats of athletic accomplishment was to be amply demonstrated the following year.
On September 14, 1933 in the Championship Sports held at St. George’s Field, St. John’s, Chester Lawrence as a member of the Guards A.A. track team was almost single-handedly responsible for that organization’s Club trophy victory. He won two sprint events, the 100 and the 220 yards and captured the mid-distance 440. He took two field events, the high jump and the broad jump. To top a magnificent performance, certainly one unequalled in the annals of Newfoundland Sport, Lawrence anchored the Guards relay team overcoming a substantial lead to capture that event for his newly adopted club.
Chester represented Newfoundland in international competition and also participated in many track meets while serving as a member of the armed forces.
Few, if any, Newfoundland athletes have matched Chester Lawrence in versatility in the realm of track and field. He deservedly merits the honor now being paid him by election to the Sports Hall of Fame.