'It was her smile,' says Jason Pryce
MANY know that Olympic 100m champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce wed her long-time boyfriend Jason in January 2011, but little is known of the quiet, shy, young man save for what the athlete herself says about him.
Her devotion to Pryce is clear, however, and at press conferences — to which he sometimes accompanies her and sits quietly and unassumingly until she is through — Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce always talks about the love she feels for her partner and the support he gave her during the early years before she became a two-time Olympic champion and former 100m world champion.
Upon her return to Jamaica on Saturday from Europe where she won three medals, including gold at the 2012 London Olympics and claimed the 100m IAAF Diamond League title, Fraser-Pryce again thanked the man known to close friends as "Jigga".
"My husband will say that my work is hard and (he knows) how everything has shaped my life," she told those gathered at the Norman Manley International Airport.
"He has been there 100 per cent and I don't know what I would ever do without him. That's one of the reasons I feel that if you feel you have chosen the right person for you then you will know. We are self-approved. We don't need anybody's approval. We have the approval of God," she added.
A long time companion of Asafa Powell, who also hails from Linstead in St Catherine, Pryce met the future star while visiting his friend during training at the University of Technology (UTech).
He told the Jamaica Observer that it was the charming smile of the "Pocket Rocket" which first attracted him in 2007 when he first saw her.
"When I go to training with Asafa I used to see her," said Pryce.
Having known the athlete was from a humble background, growing up in the community near Penwood Road, he said the intention was to make something of herself.
"She was just looking a way out. She was just always training hard," he shared.
For them life has not changed much since her rise to athletic stardom.
"We always close and we just always try to keep it that way and keep it professional. I'm very happy to be her husband," Pryce concluded.
Jason Pryce carries the suitcase of his wife Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce to the car after meeting her at the Norman Manley International Airport on Saturday.