Who was your childhood hero?
I’ve been meaning to write this post for ages, but I just saw something on Facebook that made me realise that today would be very apt. A day to remember my hero on the anniversary of his death.
I love Motor Racing, especially Formula One – something else I have to thank my Dad for. As children, my brother and I spent many weekends at Brands Hatch and Silverstone. In those days the security around the drivers and paddock/pits was minimal. You could see the cars up close and sit in some of the older ones, and you could easily meet and talk to the drivers. We’d be up at the crack of dawn, head off to a race meeting, park IN the drivers car park (Dad knew all the security people in those days) and we’d wait, autograph books in hand to meet our hero’s.
My biggest hero was James Hunt, I worshiped him. I met him on a number of occasions, there are photos of the two of us together, sadly I don’t know where they are today. I was a member of his fan club, run by his brother, and would often get personally addressed responses to letters I sent to him back in the late 1970’s.
Obviously, as an under 10-year-old I was unaware of his maverick lifestyle in those days!! But he had an aura about him, that, even at that age, I could feel. He made time to talk to a young girl, in a hideous duffle coat (thanks for that Mum) and was always happy to stop for a photo opportunity and signature.
We had no idea just how lucky we were in those days, we met all of the Grand Prix drivers – all of them.
James Hunt will always have a place in my heart. He was special to me. He died of a heart attack 20 years ago today. I miss his voice on the BBC Commentary, I wish I’d got to meet him again as an adult, something I do regret.
Who was your childhood hero? I’d love to know.