VALE CHARLES 'CHILLA' PORTER- OLYMPIC HIGH JUMPER
The Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) has paid tribute to the late Charles ‘Chilla’ Porter, two-time Olympian and silver medallist at Melbourne 1956.
Competing in Melbourne and Rome 1960, Charles Porter is remembered for taking silver in one of the most dramatic high jump competitions in Olympic history.
On 23 November 1956, Charles started his preliminaries as one of the large field of 29 jumpers at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, with 22 athletes clearing the qualification height of 1.92m to progress to the afternoon’s final.
In a final that lasted over five hours, finishing under the lights of the MCG in front of 60 000 captivated fans, the top four finishers all broke the Olympic Record.
Charles cleared 2.10m to win silver after a gripping battle, topped only by American high jump legend Charles Dumas who took gold with 2.12m.
AOC President John Coates praised Porter’s contribution to the Australian sporting landscape.
“Charles was a great athlete and ambassador for athletics in Australia and abroad,” Mr Coates said. “Winning silver in front of 60 000 fans at a home Games after a marathon high-jump competition stretching past sunset is etched into Australian Olympic folklore.
“My thoughts go to Charles’ family, friends and the Australian athletic community.”
Charles also won seven national titles, two Commonwealth Games silver medals and was inducted into the Athletics Australia Hall of Fame in 2011.
Charles ‘Chilla’ Porter passed away aged 84 on Sunday 16 August.
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