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1  Getbig Bodybuilding Boards / History - Stories - and Memories / Re: RIP - 3x Mr. Olympia Sergio Olivia has passed away on: December 16, 2012, 01:04:20 PM
New rule:

Any 'Internet Muscle Gurus' must post a photo of their physique before they give training/nutrition advice!
2  Getbig Bodybuilding Boards / History - Stories - and Memories / Re: RIP - 3x Mr. Olympia Sergio Olivia has passed away on: December 05, 2012, 01:26:51 PM
di arnold attend sergio funeral ..

Small funeral and wake, no 'celebrities, just family and friends. Possibly Arnold at this memorial in January?"

http://sergiooliva.com/
3  Getbig Bodybuilding Boards / History - Stories - and Memories / Re: RIP - 3x Mr. Olympia Sergio Olivia has passed away on: November 19, 2012, 06:30:32 PM
We just returned from Sergio's wake in Chicago, and the photos there of Sergio's home life with his children moved me immensely. I spoke with Sergio's daughter and she talked of her father with tenderness, 'my best friend, I loved him so much', she said, and that choked me up....no talk of his Myth greatness, just a daughter mourning her dad. The funeral is tomorrow which I plan to attend with Bill Seno.
4  Getbig Main Boards / Gossip & Opinions / Re: Muscular Body Image Lures Boys Into Gym, and Obsession on: November 19, 2012, 12:52:46 PM
SPOT ON

Love the healthy, self-improvement, and discipline....the fixation on the next meal, the next workout, the next contest, betting bigger, getting shrink-wrapped...but chasing hypertrophy as if it were god....not so much.

I'm attending Sergio Oliva's Wake in an hour or two. Oliva tried to flag off Junior from the carrot on the stick which draws him to one more contest, to talk to one more judge, try one more drug, get drier, more carbs, less carbs, high fat, low fat, in order to win a NPC swag to hang on his mantle. Sergio knew it was a fool's game. Not referring to the the healthful bodybuilding or lifting, but the meaningless 'pro card'.
5  Getbig Main Boards / Gossip & Opinions / Re: Muscular Body Image Lures Boys Into Gym, and Obsession on: November 19, 2012, 10:48:31 AM
A guy who becomes obsessed with bodybuilding in NOT like a guy who becomes obsessed with other athletics, like tennis or golf or basketball. Why? Because bodybuilders can't leave it at the gym like those kinds of sports. Bodybuilders are obsessed with their diets, dieting, counting carbs, fat, protein, cramming down shakes, eating out of Tupperware. They drag their boring food to family get-togethers, Thanksgiving meals, picnics, cookouts, vacations. They fret over their bodyweight, bodyfat, and freak if someone says they look fatter, skinnier, weaker. They can't pass a mirror without one eye checking themselves out.

I'm not slamming this, I'm just sort of observing/analyzing what I've seen and done myself for my whole teen and adult life. You could say that I've been there, done that, though not all bodybuilders are this way, just those prone to OCD and zealousness.
6  Getbig Bodybuilding Boards / History - Stories - and Memories / Re: RIP - 3x Mr. Olympia Sergio Olivia has passed away on: November 17, 2012, 04:58:05 PM
Sergio and ex-wife, Arlene:

http://books.google.com/books?id=uLMDAAAAMBAJ&pg=PA16&lpg=PA16&dq=%22arlene+oliva%22+sergio&source=bl&ots=JRcJU7jgJV&sig=eXwSP6poY9n0tgEQlExf392h61o&hl=en&sa=X&ei=TiKoULK6OufuyAGMn4HoBQ&ved=0CC4Q6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=%22arlene%20oliva%22%20sergio&f=false

Anybody here besides myself going to Sergio's wake on Monday?
7  Getbig Bodybuilding Boards / History - Stories - and Memories / Re: sergio oliva rip on: November 17, 2012, 12:05:33 PM
Sergio's wake is going to be on Monday, November 19th, at the Barr Funeral Home, 6222 North Broadway Chicago, IL 60660 #773-743-4034. It will be from 2-8 PM.
The burial will be on November 20th with a 10 AM Mass at St. Gertrude Catholic Parish 1420 West Granville Avenue Chicago, IL 60660-1810 #773-764-3621
Sergio's Memorial Fund was approved to Frank Merchante. It seems that they're going to try to have a memorial after the real funeral like they did with Robert Kennedy.
The Sergio Oliva Memorial Fund
c/o Fifth Third Bank
353 W. Northwest Highway
Barrington, IL  60010
Account #7237992040
Contact Person: Mr. Lorne Deacon
                         Vice President
                         (847) 381- 2352
8  Getbig Bodybuilding Boards / History - Stories - and Memories / Re: mr.america says....... on: November 17, 2012, 11:59:20 AM
Yes, You're correct....didn't mean to include Harry with the other smoother AAU guys.
9  Getbig Bodybuilding Boards / History - Stories - and Memories / Re: mr.america says....... on: November 16, 2012, 02:06:57 PM
maybe the FICH  mister world contest?

Bob won the 1966 FIHC Mr. Universe Contest in Berlin. You might call it sort of an "AAU Mr. Universe". See my post of the contest in Reply #4 above. That is not a composite or Photoshopped picture. It shows Gajda posing backstage with Arnold. Arnold was not allowed to compete officially because of some kind of BB BS, so he guest posed.
10  Getbig Bodybuilding Boards / History - Stories - and Memories / Re: mr.america says....... on: November 16, 2012, 06:39:29 AM
Yip he did he Beat a very GREEN Sergio....after 67-68 Forget it in a Neutral based Comp without all the AAU/ Hoffmans Racist Bais he would of made Gajda look like a Child.

Just IMHO: As we all know, the AAU Mr. A judges wanted a Mr. America who was 'American', who could speak the English, who was a citizen, etc. So Sergio was out on that basis. Almost like the Miss America contest where a woman needed to be 'American'. Right or Wrong or Stupid, that was the expectation almost half a century ago in 1966. Oliva couldn't even travel in some cases to the contests overseas since he was not a citizen. Was the AAU racist? Could be. But Hoffman never was, and he insisted that black heavyweight Oly lifter John Davis be housed with his white Olympic lifting team as far back as the fifties.

Weider only put Sergio on the cover of maybe 2 or 3 of his magazines out of the 72 issues [36 Muscle Builders plus 36 Mr. Americas] that were on the newsstands during the entire 3 years that Oliva was Mr. O. White guys and hot skinny girls were the name of the game back then. They sold more magazines for Joe. And that's all the Weider Bros cared about as businessmen.

Mr. Americas Vern Weaver, Jerry Daniels, Val Vasilief and 1959 Mr. A., Harry Johnson, were smooth as hell. But most of them were in the early sixties. Harry Johnson didn't even look as if he worked out, but he was a Southerner and that year the South had some political clout, and the same can be said for Southerner Daniels, who was basically a football player who lifted.

Looking at the photo below of Gadja v. Oliva, Bob Gajda looks great, just as big as Sergio. That was at the June '66 Mr. A which Bob won while Sergio took the Most Muscular. Here's the key to unlocking that mystery: Sergio was not as mind-bending as he would be six months later when he joined Weider and took his first Olympia. And Bob was cut as hell even with no tan and in outdoor lighting as seen in the February '66 S&H. In 1967 through 1972 we watched at the Duncan Y as Sergio grew and grew while working long shifts smashing iron in the scrap yard....during which time Arnie was sunning himself with a Weider contract in Cal. I don't think there are a lot of guys who feel Arnold really beat the Oak for the '72 Mr. O. The Wayne Gallasch photos taken two days after the contest were freaky from another planet.

For the strength fans among us, we knew that Sergio could warm up with the poundages that Arnold maxed out with. It was Chicago iron verses California pump.
11  Getbig Bodybuilding Boards / History - Stories - and Memories / Re: mr.america says....... on: October 01, 2012, 04:47:30 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wYrmv-3BJpU
12  Getbig Bodybuilding Boards / History - Stories - and Memories / Re: mr.america says....... on: September 30, 2012, 05:27:26 AM
Arnie and Gajda at the sixty six Mr. U. which Gajda won. Arnold came to compete, and the usual politics between BB federations finally prevented Arnold from entering. Bob was not sure what was happening since everyone was arguing in German.
13  Getbig Bodybuilding Boards / History - Stories - and Memories / Re: mr.america says....... on: September 30, 2012, 04:26:04 AM
Taken last Wednesday: A snapshot of the usual suspects with AAU Mr. America/USA/Universe winner Bob Gajda...out for his seventy second birthday greasy lunch....me with the coffee cup. Also, AAU Most Muscular Mr. A winner and multi time World Bench Record holder Bill Seno [I spotted for his first one in 1967] with a hand on my shoulder, and flanking Bob are Chicago iconic iron mavens Freddie Schutz and Al Jakich. Seno benched 570 officially as a 242 pounder...RAW in a t-shirt and gym shorts, no Monolift. The record stood for twenty four years and was only broken by two pounds...by a guy in an effin' strait-jacket bench suit which adds about a hundred and fifty pounds to your lift.

As for Gajda, he is IMO among the most intelligent BB champs alive. I trained at the Duncan Y back in the day, was at Bob's '64 Mr. A contest here in Chicago when Seno beat Sergio.
14  Getbig Main Boards / Gossip & Opinions / Sergio Oliva now.... on: January 30, 2010, 03:48:21 AM
Sergio in August of 2009 with 1966 Mr. America, Bob Gajda, 1964 Most Muscular Mr. A and World Record Bench Champion, Bill Seno, and myself. Check out Oliva's ever-present bling. Actually it's a gold religious medal, not his usual jewelry.
15  Getbig Bodybuilding Boards / History - Stories - and Memories / Re: Bob Gajda on: November 27, 2009, 03:47:09 PM
66 a

Notice in the photo with six pictures how massive Oliva's spinal lumbar muscles are down at his lower back just above his trunks. There was no Christmas tree like Samir Banout, Platz, etc., had ten years later, but that was because of entirely different lower back genetics, and because Oliva had been doing heavy Olympic lifting besides merely bodybuilding for a decade before the photo.

Also great point about DeCola v. Val V.'s placing in the year before Val V. won. Don't see how Jerry Daniels beat Gajda and Oliva one year earlier to take the Mr. A. He was big, smooth and 'not ready for prime time'. IMHO. Gajda was ripped to the bone, strong, conditioned, a judo black belt self defense instructor recently out of the Air Force, and a very helpful guy to all us kids in the gym. Sergio could hardly speak English, and that, fair or unfair, was why he didn't win the Mr. A., and went to Weider. It would have been like a beautiful Cuban woman winning the Miss America....who couldn't speak English!

By the way, Sergio jokes that he still can't speak English...more like 'Spanglish'.

Here's a photo of Bob Gajda holding his '66 Mr. A. trophy and Most Muscular trophy and leaning on the trunk of Bill Seno's old Chevy in York, Pa.

Three years later Bill picked me up in this same old Chevy on the way to the 1969 Mr. A contest held at DePaul U. here in Chicago! It was, in my book, the end of the Chicago Golden Age of Muscle. Duncan Y weightroom closed, Gajda and Seno essentially retired from bodybuilding, and guys started to focus more on marriage, occupations, and raising their families.

Ah, memories.
16  Getbig Bodybuilding Boards / History - Stories - and Memories / Re: Bob Gajda on: November 27, 2009, 07:53:07 AM
stronger than Franco?

Good question. I think Sergio would overpower him in every lift, and doubtless in the overhead Olympic lifts. Franco was my BB hero, and strong as hell, but he'd fall on his ass with the weights that Sergio snatched regularly. However, Franco had a freaky deadlift which might have bested Oliva's. Sergio also outweighed Franco by maybe thirty or forty pounds. Columbu competed at approx 180-85 in the Olympia at most, while Sergio was closter to 225.

Bottom line: All I'm reporting is what Arnold himself said in the old BB mag interview, though I've long since lost track of that magazine among my zillions of them.

But back to the original topic of this thread, Bob Gajda. Here's a photo I snapped of Bob and John Hansen last August at the excellent contest that John promoted in Illinois. Sergio, Seno, and Bob were honored onstage by John....which I think speaks of his love of the iron sport and its history.
17  Getbig Bodybuilding Boards / History - Stories - and Memories / Re: Bob Gajda on: November 26, 2009, 06:41:21 AM
Notice the two photos of Gajda and Oliva competing in the Olympic lifting meets...which were the clean and press,  the snatch, and the clean and jerk. They had to do that back then in order to get athletic points which were figured in when they competed in the AAU [York, Hoffman] Mr. America contests. You needed to prove you could actually do something with your body at that time besides shave and tan it. If not, you'd never win the Mr. A on looks alone. Later, athletic points in the total were dropped. But more than this, we all competed in Olympic lifting here in Chicago, even as we competed in bodybuilding. It was just expected in the nineteen sixties that you had to lift a barbell over your head, and not just lay on a bench and push. This was before there really was any organized powerlifting on the scale it was to grow to a few years later. Gajda and Oliva were hellaciously strong, and both worked hard at Olympic lifting in between their bodybuilding workouts at Duncan Y where I would go to train. Arnold was asked in a magazine interview around the time of his Olympia comeback who the strongest bodybuilder he'd ever met was. He replied, "Sergio Oliva. No question."

Here's a photo of Bob Gajda and Sergio clowning around at the Reunion of Chicago Muscle banquet that I mc'd in 2004. Still good friends forty years later.
18  Getbig Bodybuilding Boards / History - Stories - and Memories / Re: Bob Gajda on: November 24, 2009, 07:30:41 PM
Bob and Sergio....
19  Getbig Bodybuilding Boards / History - Stories - and Memories / Re: Bob Gajda on: November 24, 2009, 07:28:54 PM
Here's Bob Gajda and Oliva at our Golden Age of Chicago Muscle Reunion Banquet that I helped organize in 2004. We assembled 175 of Chicago's old-school lifters and a great time was had by all. The older we get the more we used to lift! Bob and Sergio were training partners at Duncan YMCA, and lifelong friends.

Here's another photo of Bob, Bill Seno, and I a couple years ago, too.
20  Getbig Bodybuilding Boards / History - Stories - and Memories / Re: Bob Gajda on: November 21, 2009, 05:46:14 PM
Bob Gajda is still a pal of mine. First saw him compete here in Chicago in 1964 for the Mr. A with Bill Seno, Sergio, etc. He's sixty nine now, still fit and strong, and is a famout physiotherapist running Gajda Health Plus in Bannockburn, Illinois. Googl him for his website. Here is a photo from three five months ago out to dinner with me on the left next to Bob doing his best Clint Eastwood squint, and Sergio and Seno, who won the Most Muscular Mr. A title in 64.
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