By Peter Holmes on 04/12/09 at 7:04 pm
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A tribute to our friend, ETU President Emilio Di Toro
The Triathlon Family was deeply saddened by the sudden death of Emilio Di Toro, President of the European Triathlon Union earlier this week. Emilio died suddenly from a heart attack on the night of Saturday 28 November. He was just 45 years old.
“Emilio was a man of learning, a man of culture and a man of high ideals. He held the highest aspirations for our sport of triathlon and was possessed of the determination to achieve those aspirations,” said Jem Lawson, Secretary General ETU. “He was at the beginning of his journey to raise triathlon’s profile and build on the work that others had initiated to make our sport comparable with the best. It will now be for others to ensure that the progress he envisaged is attained; it will be his legacy.”
As well as holding Presidency of the ETU, Emilio was also the President of the Italian Triathlon Federation (ITA), and an Executive Board member of ITU as the continental representative for Europe.
Among his recent responsibilities, Emilio worked on behalf of the Italian National Olympic Committee for the Final of Champions League which was held at the Olympic Stadium of Roma this past May 27th. This was an important assignment which confirmed his management talent.
Having been introduced to the sport of triathlon in 2001 through his daughter, Alessandra, Emilio soon became enthused and joined ITU as a continental representative for Europe. In July 2005 he was elected ETU President.
The Italian Triathlon Federation described Emilio as “the first to be present to help volunteers to set up barriers before a race, and the last to leave, applauding the very last age group triathlete across the finish line.”
“Emilio arrived in the triathlon family unexpectedly. He came to us with a storm of ideas and energy, a dynamic volcano of new projects and changes. He arrived suddenly and now he has left us suddenly, too fast for us to understand and too fast for us to find the correct words to describe the great sorrow we feel for our friend, President, and above all, a man without equal.”
Emilio exerted considerable influence in the world of sport in general and our thoughts and condolences are with his family, friends and colleagues.