Colin Schooling, father of Olympic swimming champion Joseph, dies aged 73
Colin Schooling, father of Singapore's only Olympic champion Joseph Schooling, died on Thursday (Nov 18). He was 73.
In the past few months, the former national softball player and retired businessman had undergone treatment after being diagnosed with liver cancer in June.
Thanking well-wishers on Instagram, Joseph, 26, wrote: “Dad fought till the end. Much love to everyone.”
Colin was a versatile athlete and his uncle was Lloyd Valberg, who was the first Singaporean to compete at the Olympics when he represented Malaya in the high jump event at London 1948.
Educated at Raffles Institution, Colin dabbled with hurdling and water polo before going on to become a national softball player.
In 1983, he married May Yim, whom he had first met at a Pesta Sukan softball tournament in Penang in the 1960s when she was part of the Perak team and he was representing the Republic in the Pirates team.
After three miscarriages, Joseph was born in 1995.
With their only child showing an aptitude and desire for competitive swimming, Colin and May spared no resources and effort to help Joseph fulfil his potential and realise his dream of becoming an Olympic champion.
On top of spending in excess of $1 million - they sold a house in Perth and cashed out on an endowment plan - to finance Joseph's training stint in the United States, Colin also painstakingly devised swimming contraptions that perhaps should one day take pride of place in the Singapore Sports Museum.