Ottavio Missoni, the founder of the Missoni fashion dynasty, died Thursday (May 9) at his home in Italy at the age of 92. The designer “passed away serenely,” says Missoni Spa in a statement.
Missoni and wife Rosita Jelmini (pictured above with Ottavio) founded the Missoni fashion house, known for its bright zigzag knit patterns, in 1953 in Varese, Italy. The couple’s three children and many grandchildren have since become involved in the company and expanding it worldwide.
Something fans may not know is that Ottavio was an Olympic track and field athlete for Italy, competing in the 1948 Summer Olympics in London.
Earlier this year, the family suffered another tragedy, when company CEO Vittorio Missoni, the eldest child of Ottavio and Rosita, disappeared with his wife and four others while flying in a plane on vacation to a Venezuelan island.