Geoffrey Edelsten dead at 78, AFL news 2021, tributes, how did he die?

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Former Sydney Swans owner and controversial businessman Geoffrey Edelsten has died aged 78.

The Herald Sun revealed Edelsten is believed to have passed away in his Melbourne apartment on St Kilda Road on Friday afternoon.

According to the report, the death is not being treated as suspicious.

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Edelsten was the first private owner of the Sydney Swans, purchasing the license of the club for a reported price of $6 million in 1985.

He was also a long-term benefactor of Carlton Football Club, and was awarded life membership in 2013.

According to 7News, the Swans are expected to wear black armbands in memory of Edelsten during Friday night’s game against Hawthorn at the SCG.

Edelsten’s controversial career

Edelsten started his career as a doctor, but he was deregistered in NSW and Victoria due to his unconventional medical practices.

He was also jailed in 1990 for paying a hitman to assault a former patient.

The colourful GP later founded Allied Medical Group with a business partner in the 2000s.

Edelsten made headlines for his highrolling lifestyle, which included a fleet of Rolls-Royces and relationships with younger women.

His tumultuous three-year marriage to ex-wife Leanne Nesbitt ended in 1988.

The flamboyant entrepreneur married fitness instructor Brynne Gordon in November 2009 in a $3.3 million wedding at Melbourne’s Crown Casino which hosted 550 guests — including Seinfeld star Jason Alexander.

Margot Robbie, Kerri-Anne Kennerley and American actress Fran Drescher also attended the lavish wedding.

The couple’s 41-year age gap raised eyebrows, but Gordon insisted she married for love, not money.

However, the Edelstens divorced in 2014.

Edelsten then married 26-year-old model Gabi Grecko in 2015.

Tributes flow for Edelsten

Former Swans player Greg Williams told 3AW on Friday evening: “He was a great man Geoffrey.

“People had an opinion of him but he was a lot different than the actual opinion. He was a great guy with a great heart and he loved the Swans even though he barracked for Carlton.

“He loved football and he couldn’t have looked after me any better than he did.

“I loved Dr Edelsten. All the blokes who played for the Swans I’m sure there’s great memories there.”

Former Carlton player David Rhys-Jones told the Saturday Herald Sun: “I went to his wedding to Brynne. He was a bit different and he loved the game. He grew up not far from Princes Park and would go to games with his mum.

“I always saw him at corporate functions and he was just a great supporter of Carlton”.

CNN journalist Amy Croffey tweeted: “Very sorry to hear this news, I had many a colourful conversation with Geoffrey Edelsten, including on his wedding day to Gabi Grecko. May he Rest In Peace in one of his eccentric, OTT suits.”

More to come …

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