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EFC Mourns the Loss of Fencing Legend Irene Camber

23.02.2024 23:53


At the age of 98, Irene Camber, the first Italian woman to win gold at the Olympics in fencing in 1952 in Helsinki, has passed away on February 23rd. Irene Camber was a true legend in the world of fencing for Italian athletes, a pioneer for all female fencers of every generation. An iconic moment was captured last July when the foil fencers embraced her after clinching gold at the World Championships in Milan.


Born in Trieste, a city she held dear, Irene Camber's fencing achievements were remarkable. Following her triumph in Finland, she became the world champion in Brussels in 1953 and repeated the feat with the team in Paris in 1957. Leading the Italian foil fencers to gold at the 1960 Olympics in Rome was another highlight of her illustrious career. In a 2013 interview with Giorgio Caruso during the Italian National Championships in Trieste, she expressed her profound love for fencing, not just for the victories that made her famous, but also for the opportunities it provided to travel the world at a time when such experiences were rare.


Irene Camber was fondly remembered by the entire national and continental fencing community during the European Junior Championships in Naples at the PalaVesuvio. She left a poignant message for the youth, now resonating as her legacy: "The teaching of my father, which I pass on, is that the important thing is not to win but to win with honesty, without expecting any handouts from anyone. And to the youngest fencers, I say, be patient and determined, as our sport is a long challenge with oneself."


In this time of mourning, the President of EFC Giorgio Scarso extends his heartfelt condolences: "Irene Camber gifted us with moments of joy, celebration, and lessons through victories and defeats. She epitomized the essence of women's sports in fencing, inspiring generations of athletes. Her legacy will forever inspire us to compete with integrity and determination. Rest in peace, Irene Camber, your impact on the fencing community will never be forgotten."