The eight-time Olympic champion sprinter bade farewell in a 100-metre race on Saturday evening, winning in front of a sold-out crowd of 30,000 in Kingston.
"This guy has transformed our sport, he's connected with young people, he's connected with people that didn't even think they liked track and field, he's turned them into lifelong fans and every single plaudit that he receives tonight, he's deserving of every syllable of it".
He of course won the race, clocking 10.03 seconds, despite a slow start. "He is going to be missed", said fruit seller Carlos Morgan, who was at Bolt's last race in Jamaica and comes from the Trelawny region where Bolt grew up.
Bolt's place in the pantheon of track and field has attracted a stellar field to the National Stadium, where, a month shy of 15 years ago, he first signaled his talent by winning world junior gold in the 200 metres.
Running from lane five, Bolt took control of the race before the halfway mark and pulled away to the delight of the huge crowd.
"This is his final race in Jamaica and I think everybody wanted something like this", said Powell.More news: Democrats furious at evasive answers at hearing
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Rome - Canadian sprint sensation Andre De Grasse will continue to look up to Usain Bolt, but, respectfully, can't wait for the Jamaican legend to retire from athletics. Jamaica Olympic Association president Mike Fennell told Reuters.
Seb Coe gave thanks to a man whose "contribution has been mammoth" before Jamaican prime minister Andrew Holness - wearing a Puma tracksuit - called on those present to honour "a great man, a great athlete and a great Jamaican". He brought in $34.2 million this year, with $32 million of that coming from endorsements.
The performance of the night probably came from the South African Wayde van Niekerk. "People appreciate him now, but only when he's gone will we really appreciate him".
Bolt mentions his 2016 film, "I am Bolt", and a scene where he began thinking about retirement.
"I would love to see him take interest in the sport itself from the leadership, governance and administrative point of view".