Ella's Olympic grandfather

Year 6 student, Ella Freeman, has enjoyed watching the Olympics, and was proud to share the news that her grandfather, Gerald Freeman, was a competitor at the Rome Olympics in 1960.

Gerald Freeman was a boxing star as a young man who went on to win six Tasmanian Open and four Australian titles, and represented Australia at Olympic and Commonwealth Games.

He began training in 1956 under the tuition of his elder brother in May 1956 at Bothwell in a small shed converted to a gymnasium, and was described by the press as a boxing stylist who had balance, flawless condition and calmness under fire.

He went through an extensive series of boxing bouts to win Olympic selection, and Ella says he tells the story of meeting Muhammad Ali (then Cassius Clay) there in Rome. Gerald may have given him a few worthwhile tips, as Cassius Clay went on to win the gold medal for the US in Rome.

Gerald left his work as a PMG linesman and joined the police force, eventually retiring and moving to Queensland.

Ella doesn’t have her grandfather’s passion for boxing (thank goodness!) but she does love running and athletics.