The first African-American major league baseball player, Jackie Robinson is known for breaking the baseball color line when he debuted with the Dodgers back in 1947. He is known for being the first person to bring an end to the racial segregation that existed in professional baseball, and changed the way the game has been played for forever. Mr. Robinson passed away in 1972, but his story lives on in a variety of places, including in one unexpected place: in a children’s book.
This tale, written by Jackie Robinson’s daughter, Sharon, is a story about what happens when Jackie and his family move to Connecticut. After Jackie retires, the family moves to Connecticut where they live with a beautiful lake on their property. All of the children go boating and swimming in the lake, but Sharon notices that Jackie never goes anywhere near the water. The reason why he doesn’t go near the water isn’t explained until later in the winter, when the lake freezes over. The children want to go skating on the lake but Jackie wants to make sure that it’s safe before he lets them go out on it. He finally walks onto the lake with a stick and starts tapping on the surface of the ice, to make sure that it is solid all the way through. He then hears a great deal of noise coming from the ice on the lake and suddenly Sharon realizes that he father has avoided the lake because he can’t swim.
Like most of the adversity he has faced throughout his life, Jackie doesn’t stop and continues until he gets to the middle of the lake, then declaring that it’s safe for the children to go out and skate on it now. A True Story About Jackie Robinson is not just a beautiful children’s tale about skating on a frozen lake, it’s a wonderful metaphor about how Jackie broke the color barrier in major league baseball. This tale is one that both children and adults will absolutely love.