Italian Olympic Mysteries from the 1928 St. Moritz Games

Today on Oldest Olympians, we wanted to look at Italy’s participation at the 1928 St. Moritz Olympics. Specifically, there are only four competitors for whom we lack biographical data, all of whom competed in the four/five bobsleigh team that placed 21st overall. Of the five Italians, we have full data for only one: Giuseppe Crivelli.

(The 1928 St. Mortiz bobsleigh track)

For the remaining four, we have very little information to go on. For example, Giancarlo Morpurgo’s surname is often misspelled “Morpugo” and he is sometimes referred to as a Baron, but there is nothing else we can find to indicate his true identity. Names might be an issue overall, as Carlo Sem, from Turin, might be a pseudonym. About the other two, Luigi Cerutti and Piero Marchetti, we know nothing at all.

Since this is such a short blog entry, we wanted to introduce a few additional Italian Olympic mysteries. Two of them are art competitors from the 1936 Berlin Games: Piero Fervelli and Guglielmo Giuliani. Fervelli was a painter who entered an unknown painting event with the work “Sciatore 117” (Skier 117). Domestically, he was better known as a mosaic artist, but we do not have any additional biographical information on him. About Giuliani, who entered the architecture competition with “Cabina per cronometristi” (Cabin for timekeepers), we know nothing at all. A third mysterious competitor was an individual that we know only as “Beselli”, who took part in the gliding demonstration event at the same Games.

Finally, as an update to the 1928 St. Moritz bobsleigh competition, we previously noted Horacio Iglesias of Argentina as one of the mysterious competitors. Thanks to Hernán Macchiavello, we have learned that he was Horacio Alfredo Iglesias Baseil, born January 1, 1903 in Buenos Aires, although we do not have a date of death. That is what we have for today, but we hope that you will join us for a new topic next week!

Gabriel Reymond

Today on Oldest Olympians, we had planned to feature Gabriel Reymond, the oldest survivor of the 1960 Rome Olympics, on the occasion of his 100th birthday. Reymond competed in two editions of the Olympic Games, finishing ninth in the 10 kilometer walk in 1952 and being disqualified in the 20 kilometer walk in 1960. He also competed at those events at the 1954 and 1958 European Championships respectively, finishing sixth and eighth.

(Gabriel Reymond’s obituary)

Unfortunately, we just learned that Reymond died on October 20, 2021 at the age of 98. Normally we would not feature someone who died this long ago but, given the circumstances, we felt it appropriate to provide an update. This news means that Renyldo Ferreira, born June 29, 1923, who represented Brazil in four editions of the Olympic equestrian tournament from 1948 through 1960, is the oldest survivor of the Rome Games.

(Julienne Boudewijns)

While we are writing a blog, we also wanted to provide a few updates to previous Olympic mysteries. First, we learned that the Franz Wenninger who died August 1, 1996 was the water polo player who represented Austria at the 1936 Berlin Games. Similarly, thanks to Connor Mah, we have confirmed that the Hugo Philipp who died in November 1970 was the Austrian Olympic fencer who competed in 1924, and the Walter Niederle who died November 28, 1962 was the 1948 Austrian field hockey player. Conversely, the Julienne Boudewijns who died on March 12, 2014 was not the Olympian – the Julienne Boudewijns who represented Belgium in the gymnastics tournament in 1948 actually died February 27, 1995.

Finally, in more positive news, Ralf Regnitter was able to German rower Klaus von Fersen, born March 29, 1931, was still alive, thus providing an update from 2012. We have a few more updates, but will stop here for now as to not overwhelm. We hope you will join us for the next blog entry!

Older Than Yvonne Chabot-Curtet, Part II

A few days ago we compiled a list of Olympians who may still be alive and were born between the recently deceased Félix Sienra, the longest-lived Olympian, and the current oldest living Olympian, Yvonne Chabot-Curtet. We now want to add to that list by noting the 20 non-starters and demonstration event competitors that fall into the same category. We do this not only for the sake of completing our previous post but because, as shown by the example of Dutch 1932 athletics alternate Mien Schopman-Klaver, who died at the age of 107, these competitors provide us with important links to Games that are disappearing from living memory and their achievements and sporting legacies are worth celebrating even if they did not actually get to compete at the Olympics.

As with our previous post, we suspect that all of these individuals are in fact deceased, but we cannot confirm it to be the case.

Bruno Schneider, who did not start for Austria in the 800 and 1500 metres track events.

Name Birthday Notes
Cha Sun-Jong 1916 Alternate on the 1948 Korean football squad
Antonio Fabriani October 30 1916 Did not start for Italy in boxing’s featherweight division in 1936
Miron Fux August 16 1916 Alternate on the 1936 Yugoslavian water polo team
Nicolae Gurau 1916 Alternate on the 1952 Romanian athletics team
Kaj Isaksen September 3 1916 Alternate on the 1936 Danish coxless fours rowing squad
Minoru Kino c. 1916 Participant in the 1964 kendo demonstration event
Blake H. M. Tedman September 29 1916 Representative for Canada in the 1952 non-Olympic art competitions
Stella Espino August 3 1917 Did not start for Panama in the 1960 individual foil fencing tournament
Ejnar Frydensberg Hansen April 30 1917 Alternate on the 1936 Danish coxless fours rowing squad
Joseph Meyer February 7 1917 Alternate with the Danish 1936 cycling team
Einar Nilsen 1917 Did not start for Denmark in the 1936 cycling road race
Kotaro Oshima c. 1917 Participant in the 1964 kendo demonstration event
Sosaku Yamashita c. 1917 Participant in the 1964 kendo demonstration event
Karel Basta November 20 1918 Did not start for Czechoslovakia in boxing’s flyweight division in 1936
Johannes Duyn March 19 1918 Alternate with the Danish 1936 cycling team
Guilherme Rodrigues August 26 1918 Alternate on the 1948 Brazilian basketball team
Adalbert Balint September 20 1919 Alternate on the 1960 Romanian water polo team
Bruno Schneider October 26 1919 Alternate on the 1948 Austrian athletics team
Kurakichi Chatani January 11 1920 Alternate on the 1960 Japanese foil fencing team
Hideo Ichikawa February 23 1920 Alternate on the 1960 Japanese field hockey team

Now that we have finally caught up on this topic, we will be bringing you something new and different in the coming days. We hope that you will join us!

Older Than Yvonne Chabot-Curtet

Today on Oldest Olympians, we are following up on an earlier post by looking into those Olympians who may still be alive and were born between the recently deceased Félix Sienra, the longest-lived Olympian, and the current oldest living Olympian, Yvonne Chabot-Curtet. As a reminder, noting these individuals does not represent any belief on the part of Oldest Olympians that these athletes are still alive; we simply cannot confirm that they are deceased. It remains, however, an important caveat and is always a possibility: language barriers, poor media coverage of older athletes, and desire for privacy from a generation when the Games were not as big as they are now all contribute to the chance that someone may have eluded our radar. In the past, several Olympic centenarians have reached that milestone with little public fanfare, sometimes not being revealed until their death and sometimes being older than Chabot-Curtet’s current age. We feel, therefore, that it is important to share this list to make our research methods a little more public and subject to scrutiny, perhaps solving a case or two along the way.

Hernando Navarrete represented Colombia in the 5000 metres track event at the 1936 Berlin Olympics.


Name Nation Sport Birthday
Emilio Ballado Mexico Boxing May 2 1916
Raoul Barouch Tunisia Fencing May 12 1916
Eliška Boubelová Czechoslovakia Swimming April 8 1916
Ricardo Bralo Argentina Athletics August 28 1916
Lorenzo Delgado Mexico Boxing August 10 1916
Yoichi Endo Japan Rowing March 9 1916
Tatsuo Ichikawa Japan Ice hockey February 11 1916
Masatatsu Kitazawa Japan Ice hockey April 29 1916
Fusako Kono Japan Diving January 22 1916
Aziz Malik Pakistan Field hockey April 16 1916
Franziska Mally Austria Swmmingg October 31 1916
Konstantinos Metaxas Greece Swimming May 21 1916
Hernando Navarrete Colombia Athletics April 28 1916
Daniel Sande Argentina Fencing August 26 1916
Saw Hardy Myanmar Boxing 1916
Saleh Mohamed Egypt Weightlifting June 24 1916
Borbála Sóthy Hungary Swimming December 21 1916
Hugo Vallarino Argentina Weightlifting March 27 1916
Koichi Wada Japan Water polo July 25 1916
Takehiko Yanagi Japan Field hockey March 28 1916
Kenshichi Yokoyama Japan Basketball September 22 1916

Scylla Venâncio represented Brazil in two swimming events at the 1936 Berlin Olympics.


Name Nation Sport Birthday
Jehangoo Amin India Cycling 1917
Petre Andreanu Romania Equestrian March 1 1917
Richardos Brousalis Greece Swimming/Water polo 1917
Horacio Campi Argentina Sailing November 26 1917
Alfredo Carlomagno Argentina Boxing October 5 1917
Helio Castro El Salvador Sport shooting October 10 1917
Chang Ri-Jin Japan/South Korea Basketball October 28 1917
Marin Gașpar Romania Boxing August 15 1917
Gin Gang-Hwan South Korea Athletics January 7 1917
Kosta Hakim Egypt Boxing April 17 1917
Rudolf Kloeckner Romania Alpine skiing/Cross-country skiing/Nordic combined June 10 1917
Karl Kögel Germany Ice hockey October 26 1917
Vangelis Kouvelis Greece Cycling 1917
Lie Eng Soei Indonesia Sailing May 15 1917
Qadri Mahmud Egypt Swimming October 8 1917
Sajiro Miyama Japan Boxing January 20 1917
Pavão Brazil Basketball September 6 1917
Ricardo Roberts Bolivia Sport shooting July 24 1917
Tsuneo Shibahara Japan Diving January 1 1917
Gurnam Singh India Athletics 1917
Catherine Stevens Belgium Athletics August 7 1917
Noboru Ueno Japan Athletics January 8 1917
Scylla Venâncio Brazil Swimming May 9 1917
Jorge Vidal Argentina Gymnastics c. 1917
Taichi Yamada Japan Rowing February 20 1917
Misao Yokota Japan Swimming February 3 1917
Bouchaib Zeroual Morocco Rowing 1917

Ilona Szikora represented Hungary in the discus throw at the 1952 Helsinki Olympics.


Name Nation Sport Birthday
Leopoldo Briola Argentina Weightlifting December 23 1918
Guillermo Canciani Argentina Sport shooting November 18 1918
Souren Chowdhury India Sport shooting July 27 1918
Jan Cools Belgium Wrestling October 1 1918
Felix Erbert Czechoslovakia Swimming June 9 1918
Oskar Holinger Switzerland Wrestling July 22 1918
Kim Won-Gwon South Korea Athletics December 13 1918
Guillaume Merckx Belgium Basketball April 21 1918
Giuseppe Molinari Italy Equestrian 1918
Oskar Neuenschwander Switzerland Rowing May 3 1918
Alfredo Petrone Uruguay Boxing November 26 1918
Chhota Singh India Athletics 1918
Ilona Szikora Hungary Athletics Janaury 17 1918
Khawaja Muhammad Taqi Pakistan Field hockey 1918
Daniel Trujillo Venezuela Sailing May 24 1918
Carlos Villanueva Argentina Equestrian July 30 1918
Yap Pow Thong Malaysia Sport shooting November 11 1918
Ahmed Zahur Khan Pakistan Athletics 1918
Bram Zanella Venezuela Sport shooting September 27 1918


Gudrun Grömer represented Austria in the diving tournament at the 1948 London Olympics.

Name Nation Sport Birthday
Roger Anciaux Belgium Sailing October 30 1919
Angela Anderes Switzerland Figure skating July 10 1919
Fernand Bourgaux Belgium Athletics December 25 1919
Germán Briceño Venezuela Sport shooting August 13 1919
Mahmoud Fawzy Egypt Wrestling October 10 1919
Oskar Gerber Switzerland Athletics 1919
Gudrun Grömer Austria Diving November 7 1919
Günter Heine Germany Water polo September 8 1919
Henri Hermans Belgium Basketball March 3 1919
Mauricio de la Lama Mexico Sailing December 11 1919
Georges Leenheere Belgium Water polo November 21 1919
Min Byeong-Seon South Korea Equestrian 1919
Vasile Panait Romania Bobsleigh July 11 1919
Pavel Parshin Soviet Union Sailing December 22 1919
Antoine Raeymaeckers Belgium Wrestling April 4 1919
Ítalo Sartori Argentina Rowing November 29 1919
Manoel da Silva Portugal Sport shooting June 1 1919
Rei Takemura Japan Swimming April 29 1919
Gavrila Törok Romania Water polo May 7 1919
José María Vallsera Colombia Sport shooting June 24 1919
Frans Van Den Berghen Belgium Canoeing September 25 1919
João Vieira Portugal Athletics March 6 1919
Alexandros Vouxinos Greece Alpine skiing November 23 1919

Yukio Inokuma represented Japan in four rifle shooting events across three editions of the Games: 1952, 1956, and 1960.


Name Nation Sport Birthday
Minna Blüml Germany Luge May 17 1920
Sayed Bulbul Egypt Football March 23 1920
Yukio Inokuma Japan Sport shooting Janaury 2 1920
Muhammad Khurram Pakistan Field hockey March 1920
Manuel Solís Mexico Cycling May 10 1920
John Stuart Canada Weightlifting January 24 1920

Next time on Oldest Olympians, we will take a look at the non-starters and demonstration event competitors that meet the criteria for this list. We hope that you will join us!