Tributes paid to Hackney sports hero and coach Lloyd Cowan
- Credit: archant
A champion high jumper has paid tribute to fellow Hackney sports "hero" and coach, Lloyd Cowan MBE, who has passed away.
The international hurdler grew up in the borough and went on to become a legendary coach who helped top athletes such as sprinter Christine Ohuruogu and hurdler Andy Turner become champions.
British high jumper Dalton Grant was four years younger than Lloyd, who passed away at age 58 on January 11.
He told the Gazette: "[Lloyd] is someone I looked up to. He inspired me when I was growing up."
Dalton said he followed in the international hurdler's footsteps by becoming the first Black world-class high jumper in Europe, taking home medals and competing in three Olympic games.
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His father and Lloyd's mother were classmates in Jamaica, Dalton said, before they moved to England and both attended Benthal Primary School in Lower Clapton.
They even competed on the same team at the 1994 Commonwealth Games in Canada.
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Dalton said Lloyd was a "giving, very well respected and nice guy" and emphasised how important role models are for young people in sport.
He added: "Hackney knows our success, when it comes to sport we are the heroes."