Roy de Silva was cremated after final journey through hometown on Wednesday evening. He was a gifted sportsman and promoter; died on Monday at the age of 80, and he was cremated at the Mahiyawa General Cemetery on Wednesday, leaving behind his two sons Asitha, Chulantha and his wife Chandrika .
Only a few may remember the part played by him to uplift sports; he should never be forgotten in the field of sports and at the National Olympic Committee.
Roy is one of the top class sportsmen, produced by Kingswood College, Kandy where he excelled in hockey, football, athletics and cricket. After leaving school, he played hockey for Kandy Whites and was an automatic choice for the Kandy and Up-Country teams whenever they played against foreign teams. He was also a top hockey umpire and helped his school in coaching. Roy also played cricket for Kandy United SC. along with Dr. CDL Fernando, ME Marikar, Bertie Gomes, Mervyn Berenger to name a few and also was a fine cueist.
Later, he took up to administration and was made the Secretary of the Kandy District Hockey Association for ten years, under the watchful eyes of the late MS Jainudeen. From Kandy, he was elected as the President of the Sri Lanka Hockey Federation, and held the post from 1979 to1998. During his term of office, the Women’s National Hockey Championship was introduced and a cup was presented by him. It is now held annually. He also had the rare privilege of being the Vice President of the Asian Hockey Federation from 1979 to 1983.
He was elected as vice president of the National Olympic Council in 1979 and held the post till he became president in 1983. He was the president for 14 years which is a record. He was elected to the post of vice president of the Asian Olympic Council in 1986 and his finest moment came in 1990 when he was elected as the acting president of the Asian Olympic Council, and had the privilege of opening the 1990 Asian Games in China.
Roy also had the privilege of being in the Finance Committee of the Commonwealth Federation from 1990 to ‘98 and was elected as the life president of the SAF games in 1996. He is the first man from Kandy to take up the NOC Chairman’s post, and held it for 14 years.
He was one time president of Kandy Cricket Club and later was the president of Kandy District Cricket Association, where several international games were played in Kandy.
As president of the Old Kingswoodians Union, he presented a trophy in memory of the founder of the school, LE Blaze, for the annual rugby match between Kingswood and Wesley. Now this encounter is a famous one in the school’s calendar.
He did a lot for Kandy Club; held office at the Century Old Kandy Club for 14 years. During his presidency, this writer with the help of Manilal Fernando, donated cement to erect six rooms, and today the main income of the club is derived from this. Only a handful of members know this. He was a long-serving president of the club for well over 14 years. At the cremation, everybody who were present felt a sense of loss with Roy’s passing.