Full name: Francis Roy "Frank" Roberts
Height: 5'7" (170 cm)
Weight: 143 lbs (65 kg)
Born: March 5, 1945
Died: February 7, 2011 in Armidale, New South Wales, Australia
A quarter of a century before Cathy Freeman’s emotional victory at the Sydney Olympics, Frank Roberts became a trailblazer as the first Aboriginal Australian to compete at the Olympic Games.
He was raised on the Cubawee Reserve in the extreme North-East of New South Wales and was part of a family thoroughly immersed in boxing. At least eight of his extended family, including his brother Johnny, boxed professionally.
Roberts’ rise in the amateur ranks was meteoric. He moved to Sydney in 1962 to look for work, walked into a local boxing club on a whim and within twelve months had became state and national champion whilst winning twenty of his twenty-five fights.
Eliminated in his first round match in Tokyo, Frank enjoyed a brief career as a pro after his Olympic experience. He later settled in the small town of Armadale where he trained young boxers for 40 years.
Roberts was part of the Olympic torch relay in 2000.
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