Robert made a name for himself as a highly successful football player, described in 1941’s ACTA as “one of the best all-around halfbacks the school has ever had.” He was also a vital member of Ridley’s hockey and cricket teams and, during the annual Track and Field Sports Day in 1942, was named Senior Champion, turning in brilliant efforts in all events he entered.
During the 1941 Little Big Four championship football game, Robert noticed TCS had shifted their defence just before the snap, leaving only one defender. It was an enormous risk, but he decided to run for the first down rather than punt. “I always felt if it was just one guy I had to beat, I could do it,” he reasoned. His decision—and his hustle—would lead to the game's winning touchdown.
Robert went on to study at Princeton University, where he played varsity football and hockey. At the college level, however, he was to be deprived of the opportunity to develop the enormous potential he had shown at Ridley. Robert left Princeton to join the RCAF, returning to graduate mid-year in 1948. That he so willingly tabled his considerable abilities in service of such a worthy global cause, is certainly something to be celebrated. We remain grateful for his service.