He was one of the greatest paddlers in history.
We are talking about Ivan Patzaichin, a true legend of the canoe.
Born in 1949, the son of a fisherman and a seamstress, he died yesterday in Bucharest due to a lung tumor that killed him in three months.
Romanian of Lipovan origins (the Lipovans are a Slavic ethnic group of Slavic origins present in some areas of Romania, Ukraine and Moldova) – can boast a number of impressive medals, including Olympics and World Cups.
Four golds and three silvers at the Olympic Games and eight golds, four silvers and ten bronzes at the World Championships in all disciplines.
Patazaichin represented an example of great sporting longevity, winning the gold medal at the Olympic Games in all editions in which he participated in the span of 18 years: gold in 1968 in Mexico City (when he was 19), ended his career with a gold and silver in Los Angeles in 1984 (at 35).
After retiring, he was put in charge of the national team of his country (he participated in this capacity in five other Olympics) and as a true legend, a statue was dedicated to him in front of the Dinamo Bucharest stadium.
Not only that: in 1990 he was awarded the Olympic Ordern 2006 he was included in the list of the 100 most important Romanians in history (in 90th place, in a ranking voted by the Romanians themselves for a television program entitled Mari Români – Great Romanians).
Great condolences from all his compatriots, with many posts dedicated to him on Twitter
A thought therefore also came from the Romanian royal family