THE West Indies Cricket Umpires Association (WICUA) is among several regional bodies which have expressed sadness at the passing of its former president, Patrick “Pat’ Whyte, last Tuesday in Antigua & Barbuda.
According to a release from the WICUA, Whyte succumbed after a long illness including Parkinson’s. disease.
The release pointed out that “Whyte served the WICUA and the region with distinction having risen to the status of First Class umpire in the 1980s, officiating in a number of first-class matches especially in the Leeward Islands at a time when only home umpires were being used.
He officiated with distinction, becoming one of the leading umpires in the region but unfortunately did not make it to Test status.
Whyte rose to become the president of the WICUA in 2001, after serving as Area vice-president for the Leeward Islands for a number of years
He served as president of WICUA for six years until his retirement in 2007. “During the intervening years, Patrick also served as a cricket commentator/analyst during first-class matches in his home country of Antigua.
He will be sorely missed throughout the region for his presence and considerate moderation of thought at WICUA conventions. The WICUA wishes to express sincere condolences to his dear wife Cheryl and family on the passing of this giant of a cricket umpire.”
Whyte was also a former sports administrator and a former head of the ministry’s sports department and is being remembered as an individual who has helped to shape the way sports is administered throughout Antigua and Barbuda.
According to the Antigua Observer, Whyte spearheaded the formation and introduction of the National Sports Awards which, today, is used to honour and reward top national athletes on an annual basis.
Former West Indies captain, Sir Vivian Richard,s said the country has suffered a huge loss, remembering the role Whyte played in his life at an early age.
“Hearing of the passing of Pat Whyte is a huge loss to us, so I just want to send my condolences to the Whyte family. Why there is something sentimental about the loss of Pat is the fact that Pat and Bran Jacobs were part of the committee that sent Andy and myself to Alf Gover. He (Pat Whyte), played a huge role on that particular committee with all the other folks like Bran Jacobs,” Richards told the Observer.
Condolence messages were also sent to Whyte’s wife Cheryl and family from the Barbados Cricket Umpires Association (BCUA), the Canada Cricket Umpires Association (CCUA), Bermuda Cricket Umpires Association (BCUA), Jamaica Cricket Umpires Association (JCUA) and the and the United States Association Cricket Umpires Association (USACUA).