BY MICHAEL HOUSTON
Swedish runner Folke Alnevik, who was the world’s oldest living Olympic medallist, has passed away at the age of 100.
Alnevik was part of the 4×400 metres relay team that took bronze for Sweden at the London 1948 Olympics.
He became the oldest living Olympic medallist in February 2018 after the passing of Bahamian Olympic sailing champion Sir Durward Knowles, who died at 100 years old too.
Alnevik won the bronze medal alongside Kurt Lundquist, Lars-Erik Wolfbrandt and Rune Larsson.
He also took a European Championship bronze in the same event in Oslo in 1946 and became the student world champion the following year in the 400m.
Alnevik won six national medals over the distance.
“He was a kind, strong, determined and competitive father,” son Mats said, as reported by Sportbladet.
“Competition was a very big part of his life and youth and also in recent years when he became chairman of Gästrikland’s athletics association.
“He devoted his whole life to sports and thought it was very fun.”
On reaching 100, Alnevik was said to have found the milestone funny and stated he was please to have outlived his father, who died at the age of 91.
Alnevik served in the military in his early life and was active into his 90s – playing golf and driving a car until he was 95.
He reportedly contracted COVID-19 and managed to overcome it, but died of complications from a bedsore.
The United States’ John Russell, also 100, is now thought to be the oldest living Olympic medallist.
Russell won equestrian bronze at the Helsinki 1952 Olympics.
He was born in February 1920, around three months after Alnevik.
British sailor Jasper Blackall is now the second-oldest living Olympic medallist and also 100, having been born in July 1920.
American canoeist John Lysak, who competed at Berlin 1936, is currently the oldest living Olympian in the world at 106.
The oldest living Olympic champion is Hungary’s former gymnast Ágnes Keleti, who won 10 Olympics medals in the 1950s including five golds.
Keleti is 99 years old.