Robina Higgins had long been considered one of Canada’s top woman athletes before she was finally accorded the honour in 1937. Born in Winnipeg, she first honed her throwing skills as a baseball player. She then expanded that talent to athletics’ field events, proving outstanding in javelin, shot put, discus and baseball throw disciplines, winning national championships in all four events and setting several Canadian records along the way. She likely would have dominated at the 1937 Canadian Track and Field Championships, but athletics officials opted not to conduct a national competition that year, opting instead to hold zone trials for the 1938 British Empire Games in Sydney. The 21-year-old stenographer from Winnipeg, however, rewrote her national javelin record in 1937, and edged golfer Mrs. John Rogers in voting for the country’s top woman athlete award. Higgins went on to win the Gold medal in javelin at the 1938 British Empire Games.

Wendy Long

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