Sam Mings the founder of Lay Witnesses for Christ the acclaimed world athletics Christian outreach with a special emphasis on the Olympics lost his only son Bo Mings 49.
Sam and Sharon Mings saw their son go to be with the Lord after a 18 month battle with cancer – born Samuel Joseph ‘BO’ Mings Jr. – the date September 15, 2017. The pain remains, and this article is as much a tribute to Sam and Sharon years of dedicated ministry to athletes as it is to their son who was a part of their mission.
Sam said – “He battled strongly and was always upbeat. Bo never smoked and when discovered in his lungs it had already spread to the lining in his bones and into his brain...
“The cancer was discovered when I noticed Bo having difficulty breathing and I personally carried him to hospital and they discovered he had more tumours in his lungs than they could count!
“We were preparing to leave for ‘REACH OUT 2016 BRAZIL’ for the Olympic mission during the Rio Olympiad. We were going to announce Bo’s elevation to President and I would become Chairman of Board. Then this!
I met Bo numerous times in my Olympic chaplaincy and engagement with Sam and Sharon Mings with their world wide athletic ministry. It was through Sam that I was awarded the Olympic Ministry Medal in 2009 presented by Olympian of the Century Carl Lewis.
‘Bo my son’
Sam spoke of his son, “Bo was our only son and was ‘more like Jesus than any man I’d ever met here on earth”.
1,800 friends showed up with only three days notice for the Service – it was Sam’s great privilege to conduct the service. Several Olympians and Coaches across America attended. Carl Lewis and Joe Deloach both spoke before I brought the message which was streamed live into Seoul, Korea and other countries...
Sam said - “We were overwhelmed by the attendance. Bo was loved and respected as you know!”
Many wonderful expressions of kindness were shown to us and Bo’s family (wife Margie and four children - Carlye Jamil Mings Huynh, Samuel Joseph Mings III, Sophia Isabelle Mings and Benjamin Gabriel Mings.
We were moved that Jerry Jones the owner and general manager of the Dallas Cowboys attended. Jerry attended a Christian Athlete Award (where you received your Award) and heard Bo bring the ‘Challenge’.
Jerry was so moved he came to the Stage afterward to meet me and stood in line - and then said: “My name is Jerry Jones - and I interrupted him and said certainly I know you seeking to put him at ease. He went on to say that he and Gene (his wife) and the Dallas Cowboys wanted to offer their Jet to fly Bo back and forth from Fort Worth to Houston at M.D. ANDERSON ( Premier Cancer Hospital).
This was so precious and no matter whatever is said about this high profile individual. Such people are constantly under scrutiny such is our society.
The Christian Athletic centre in Zambia is co-named ‘Sam and Bo Mings Jr Compassion Centre”
For more information
Dr Mark Tronson is a Baptist minister (retired) who served as the Australian cricket team chaplain for 17 years (2000 ret) and established Life After Cricket in 2001. He was recognised by the Olympic Ministry Medal in 2009 presented by Carl Lewis Olympian of the Century. He mentors young writers and has written 24 books, and enjoys writing. He is married to Delma, with four adult children and grand-children. Dr Tronson writes a daily article for Christian Today Australia (since 2008) and in November 2016 established Christian Today New Zealand. Dr Mark Tronson’s Press Service International in 2019 was awarded the Australasian Religious Press Association’s premier award, The Gutenberg. In September 2020 Summer Moore presented her commission portrait of Dr Mark Tronson holding the Gutenberg plaque. The above photo is the upper part from this portrait.
Mark Tronson's archive of articles can be viewed at: http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/mark-tronson.html