Master Robson Gracie, who was the eldest living Gracie, has died at
88 years old.

Robson passed away on Friday in Rio de Janeiro. The father of
Charles, Flavia, Renzo, Ralph, Ryan (died 2007), Keila and Robson
Jr., Robson was born in 1935. The second son of 21 born to the
patriarch of the family, Carlos Gracie, Robson followed the
footsteps of his uncle Hélio Gracie and his older brother, Carlson,
and debuted in vale tudo with a victory over capoeira fighter Artur
Emídio. Later, he would draw with Valdo Santana, brother of
Valdemar Santana, in a battle where he would show his renowned

“I was very hurt, so my father considered stopping the fight at [an
intermission] and I said, ‘Father if you do that I’ll lower my
shorts and urinate in the middle of the ring,’” Robson said. The
fight continued and Robson’s bravery was rewarded with a draw.

Robson was also involved in politics. His notoriety in jiu-jitsu
led him to be hired as a bodyguard of renowned deputy Leonel
Brizola. After the 1964 military coup, he was imprisoned for 64
days and tortured until he was released through the intervention of
his uncle Hélio.

“I was tied up at home with my son Renzo’s yellow belt, I was
tortured and saw unthinkable things,” Robson said. “Hélio Gracie
was the one who intervened with Figueiredo and General Sylvio
Frota. Of the 50 who were imprisoned with me, 49 died.”

Later, in the 1980s, during Leonel Brizola’s first term as governor
of Rio de Janeiro, Robson assumed the presidency of the
Superintendence of Sports of the State of Rio de Janeiro (SUDERJ).
During this period, he promoted the return of vale tudo events to
the state, including the legendary rematch between Rickson
and Rei Zulu at Maracanãzinho and the historic
confrontation between muay thai and jiu-jitsu in 1984, when
, Fernando
, Eugênio Tadeu, Marcelo
and Flávio Molina made their debuts. In the same
decade, he assumed the presidency of the Jiu-Jitsu Federation of
Rio de Janeiro (FJJ-Rio). In 2019, Robson Gracie was moved at the
inauguration ceremony of the statue of his older brother and
greatest idol, Carlson Gracie, next to his academy in

Four years earlier, however, the master said he was against the
project that aimed to put statues of the patriarchs together.

“They wanted to put the statue of Carlos and Hélio in the subway,”
he said. “Carlos and Hélio were national heroes who impacted the
lives of thousands of people around the world. If you want to pay
tribute to them, it has to be in front of the beach or somewhere at
the height of what these two represented for our country.”

Over the years, Master Robson coined a number of phrases extolling
the importance of the feats of his family members and of jiu-jitsu,
including “Back off not even to gain impulse,” “Cowards were not
allowed in Gracie family,” “Our family is made of heroes, and “What
a pleasure I feel to be a Gracie.”

Robson Gracie’s funeral will take place in Rio de Janeiro city hall
on Sunday, April 30 between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. The attire will be
white gi.

Source link

Robson Gracie Dies at 88 Years Old