Hall of Fame – Christine Cruice
Christine was instrumental in developing a fair and equal classification system and took the helm as chairman at a time when CP Sport had to battle to overcome major financial problems. Seeing the current healthy state of CP Sport, and all the excellent work carried out by our dedicated staff, would have pleased her immensely.
Christine was one of the most influential and highly respected English classifiers. She served the CPISRA cause well for over 25 years at local, national and international level. Many Scottish athletes with cerebral palsy, head injury or stroke who participated at the Robin Hood or Sherwood Games during the 80s and 90s were classified by Christine. In Barcelona in 1992, she played a prominent role in the overhaul of the CPISRA international classification system.
CP Sport owes a lot to the commitment and expertise of Christine. She was a highly committed volunteer for many years and was the first line classification contact for many English and overseas athletes who went on to excel in international sport. Christine was a very skilled physiotherapist with a very analytical mind and brilliant communication skills. Athletes and players warmed to her immediately and fellow classifiers viewed her as a very dignified, competent and distinguished lady.
She never became flustered even in the most trying of situations and she had the skills and abilities to defuse potentially difficult situations when all around her were losing composure. Christine was a wonderful team player. Those of us who worked with her at international level appreciate she was a woman of great integrity. Classifiers have to be cool under pressure and Christine delivered consistently.
Christine Cruice is one of the unsung heroines of international classification. She has served the CP movement far and beyond the call of duty and has carried out her duties in the most low key manner. Nobody who has worked with her has a cross word to say about her and athletes and players who have been through her hands always speak about her with great respect and affection. Christine always valued the athlete first and foremost and believed that the classification process should be painless and if possible enjoyable.
She placed great emphasis on putting the athlete at ease. This came easily to her because she was a “classy” lady. She was an incredible supporter of her daughter Esther who had a wonderful Paralympic career as a sprinter. Esther now works as a coaching advisor with UK Coaching. Understandably Christine was immensely proud of Esther and together they were a great team.The international movement can ill afford to lose great people like Christine. A number of us who worked closely with her in Barcelona come together in the Netherlands for the first time in many years. We shall take time to remember her and the significant role she played in the history and development of CP classification worldwide. She has served CPISRA well and offered years of support and preparing athletes for international sport. Christine may have left us but she will never be forgotten by the army of athletes and players whom she has influenced and the many national and international classifiers who have benefited from working with her.
Thank you Christine. You made Cerebral Palsy Sport a much stronger organisation than it was when you joined by your commitment as a volunteer with lots of expertise and compassion. We re indebted to you.