Today on Oldest Olympians we have two very exciting birthdays to celebrate and, since we could not choose which one to feature, we decided to feature them both in one quick blog post!
(Sienra, pictured after receiving the COVID-19 vaccination at Telenoche)
The first birthday is that of Uruguayan sailor Félix Sienra, the oldest living Olympian, who turns 106 today! Sienra represented his country in the Firefly class at the 1948 London Olympics, where he placed sixth. A lawyer by profession, he was much better known in Uruguay as a sports administrator, particularly with Yacht Club Uruguayo, where he served as Commodore from 1973 through 1975 and again from 2003 through 2005. He was also the Vice President of the Uruguayan Olympic Committee and worked with Panathlon Club Montevideo. He is the longest-lived Uruguayan Olympian and one of only three Olympians to have reached the age of 106!
(Rhoda Wurtele, pictured in a clip from My Canadian Moment)
The second is that of Canadian alpine skier Rhoda Wurtele, who turns 100 today! Both her and her twin sister Rhona, who died in 2020 at the age of 97, reached the top of the national skiing scene, with Rhona competing in the Olympics in 1948 and Rhoda in 1952. In 1948, the already injured Rhona broke her leg near the end of the course and placed last among the finishers, while Rhoda did not compete at all due to an ankle injury. Rhona, meanwhile, did not participate in 1952, while Rhoda had her best finish of ninth in the giant slalom. Both later had careers as ski instructors and were inaugurated into multiple Halls of Fame for their pioneering efforts in the field of Canadian women’s skiing. Rhoda is only the third Canadian Olympian to reach the age of 100!