DARC Ethiophile Chronicles
On this day
6 February, 1993 Arthur Robert Ashe, a prominent African American tennis player who was born and raised in Richmond, Virginia died on 6 February 1993. He died of complications from AIDS after contracting HIV from a blood transfusion during heart surgery.
Ashe, a vocal and long-time protester against apartheid, was approved a visa to visit South Africa in 1973. This was after a number of refusals. He became the first black player to win a title-a doubles match-in the South African Open.
During his career, Ashe won three Grand Slam titles. He will also be remembered for his efforts to advance social causes. The Arthur Ashe Courage Award, an ESPY Award for humanitarian work, was named after him, as is the National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows, New York, where the U.S. Open tournament is played.
Ashe is the only black male to win a major singles title in tennis history. He also set a record in 1968, which may never be equalled as he won both the U.S. Amateur and the U.S Open championships.
For 12 years, Ashe was ranked among the world's top ten tennis players. He was ranked number one in both 1968 and 1975. He was one of the founders of the powerful Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) in 1972; he served as the organization's president.
Ashe served on several corporate boards, wrote books, and received numerous honorary degrees.