Life Was Like A Box of Chocolates But My Dad Told Me Also That There Was A Time When Boxing Was Once Really Great .
My Dad , God rest his soul was a great man. But unfortunately once he saw fit to leave my Mom myself and my two younger siblings when we were at a tender age. He became nothing more than a person whom I no longer respect. But that didn’t mean that the man who was my father wasn’t a mean individual. It was just the fact that he really didn’t have what it took to commit to his wife and family. However if he did instill anything in me , it was my love for the sport of boxing . From there I gravitated towards not only the sport of boxing but also the martial arts in particular.
Having competed within the genre at a young age and gradually becoming proficient enough. Where upon having joined the military I actually taught martial arts (karate) to members of the military. As a member of the British Royal Marines for 6 ½ years , I’ve got to admit that those years may well have been some of the most fulfilling years of my adult life. And from the age of 18 until I was 25 it was one of the real highlights of my life. Military life for anyone who seeks an interest in seeing what it really is all about .
Suffice to say it can be really exciting and fulfilling . For me it was something where the memories will definitely live with me for the rest of my life. And that includes the ones where I’ve been on the battlefield and actually faced death serving my country during a conflict. To put it mildly those two year spent on the front in Ireland in the waning years when the IRA was still something to be reckoned with now brings back memories of what the coalition forces are said to facing in Afghanistan and Iraq.
But with regard to the situation that they’re now facing. Let’s just say the sooner this episode is over the better off we’ll all be. Fighting an enemy that in some respects we really know nothing about is one thing. But the temerity to believe that an invasion of both countries would indeed bring it democracy was as asinine a case anyone would wish to hear or witness. But this piece isn’t meant to be a political rant. That’s best left for another day and time.
As alluded to earlier my father brought into my life the sport of boxing. One of the fighters he always espoused was that of Archie Moore. This legendary fighter was one of the alltime greats and to say his resume’ was long and filled with moments of history and infamy could be viewed as something extraordinary would be an understatement. And as a fighter Moore credentials speak more of a pugilist whose status as one of the best light heavyweights ever to grace the sport. And the fact that he held the title for close to a decade spoke volumes of him as a fighter during that particular era. From 1952 to 1962 as the light heavyweight champion Moore reigned supreme over the division for what many deemed was an indeterminate period.
In defeating then champion Joey Maxim who would go on to be inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame. An accolade that would also be bestowed upon Moore, himself. Maxim at the time was considered the best fighter of the era within the light heavyweight division. But Moore’s prowess not just as a fighter but knockout artist left everyone bewildered as to the decision. Moore defeated Maxim . And the rest as they say is history.
Moore , however would go on to make a name for himself in his bouts with such legendary greats as Rocky Marciano, Muhammad Ali, Nino Valdez, Carl ‘Bobo’ Olson and Floyd Patterson. But also what also stood out concerning Moore’s career as a fighter. It was the fact that he’d also felt that he was capable of challenging for even greater honors in seeking the heavyweight title. His fights within the division became stuff that legends were most certainly made of. And if nothing else over the course of his professional career of over 200 fights. It can be said that Moore brought a great deal more to the sport of boxing than many that had preceded him before. His KO record (145 KO’s in 221 bouts) will go down unequalled within the annals of the sport. And if anything it may well be a long time before we see another fighter with the impressive skills of Archie Moore.
This much is certain over the course of his illustrious career , rarely had we seen a fighter of his pedigree in a boxing ring. Unfortunately within this modern era we’re all too use to seeing fighters that have marginal talent and not much else by way of a personality much less boxing prowess. The sad fact is the sport is no longer what it once was. When the fighters held the nation transfixed and mesmerized by what they were either witnessing on television or listening to by way of a radio. Now it’s become about PPV and a slew of bouts that on the face of are about as exciting as watching paint dry.
picture appears courtesy of corbis / Gabriel Duclaye ……
picture appear courtesy of getty images/ Frank Thornton……..
picture appear courtesy of ap/photo/ Michael Constantinous . …….