Anthony Greco was born in Messina, Sicily and began learning the sport at the age of seven from his Maestro father. In 1924, he graduated from the National Fencing Academy in Naples, Italy. He continued his studies at the University of Bologna where he received a Doctorate in Physical Education. He was also the fencing instructor at the University, taught in private and public schools in Bologna, then operated his own club in Milan. In 1930 he moved to the United States, teaching first at the Italian Fencing Club of New York prior to opening the Greco Fencing Academy. He also became the coach at Long Island University in Brooklyn. Greco moved west in 1946, citing health concerns. He also founded a fencing supply company. Around 1950 he returned to Italy for an extended stay. Upon his return, he moved swords, masks and shop to Tucson, Arizona and by Fall of 1951 was the coach at the University of Arizona. He retired in the early 1960s and moved to Florida, passing away in 1975 at the age of 82.
The Latin meaning of that, according to Google Translate, is “Wine of the Spirit”. As a philistine in the ways of Latin, I’ll have to accept it. No clue. Truly.
It’s a common enough name. By searching the White Pages for Greco in San Mateo, CA, it returns 388 records. Widen it to the whole of the US and there’s over 36,000. In the fencing world though, one family has a lock on who you think of when putting the names “Greco” and “Fencing” together.
A couple of months ago, I received an invite from Jessica to come to the OC to view the bequest of the Giambra family to the Olympic Club. Salvatore Giambra was an excellent fencer who got his start in the 1930s at Unione Sportiva Italiana
Regular readers will be familiar with the many tales told herein of Charles Selberg, himself a graduate of SF State (BA ’57, MA ’60). Selberg had his fencing beginnings at SF State under the tutelage of Erich Funke.
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