Italian fencing is in mourning. Mario Favia, honorary member of the Italian Fencing federation and of the International Fencing Federation, passed away last night, at the age of 85.
Born on 6 January 1930 in Alexandria, Egypt, the son of a fencing master, he moved to Italy to study architecture and practised high-level fencing. He was a member of the men's foil team from 1952 to 1960. He was Youth Foil World Champion in 1950 and 1951. At the 1953 Universiade, he won gold in men's foil, individual and team, while, at the 1955 Universiade, he was first both in individual and team foil events, as well as in team men's sabre. He also won the international tournament for individual foil in 1954 and 1958.
After withdrawing from sports, he became an international referee and President of the national Refereeing Commission, as well as member of the Tournament Directorate for various editions of the World Championships and Olympic Games, from 1960 to 1996.
Internationally, he was member of the FIE Statute and Rules Commission from 1993 to 1996. In 1996, he became member of the FIE General Secretariat of the then President Renè Roch. He held this position until 2004. During the same period, he was also member of the FIE Executive Committee.In 2001, he became Honorary Member of the FIE, and in 2007 the International Federation appointed him Honorary Vice-President.
Today, Italian fencing mourns not only the athlete, the leader, and the international high representative, but also, first and foremost, the man. His great passion for sports and for fencing in particular shone through. He brought it to every activity and every task.
The President of the Italian Fencing federation, Giorgio Scarso, the Federal Council, the Secretariat, and everyone in Italian fencing, extend their support to Favio's wife and family during these difficult times, expressing their sincere and heartfelt condolences.
A minute of silence will be observed in memory of Mario Favia on Friday, 15 May, at the start of the Italian Junior and Cadet Championships 2015.