Friday, June 8, 2012

THE COMPLETE BC BOXING STORY, 1939 to 2012

THE BRITISH COLUMBIA AMATEUR
BOXING STORY THROUGH MY
EYES and EARS:  BY Brian Zelley













Introduction:
Starting in 1983, I determined that the story of amateur
boxing in British Columbia has not been told.  So 
starting with the "Vancouver Island Boxing News",
I began a journey to tell the story through my eyes and ears.

FROM 1939 to 2012: Or, from the journey of Kenny:
One could say it is the story of the many boxers from the
likes of KENNY LINDSAY in 1939 to 
boxer KENNY LALLY in 2012.  But, of course, there have 
been many more that have made an impact on the sport
and hundreds that participated with any International
or National recognition.


Following the production of two issues of the Island boxing news,
I became the editor of the "BC Amateur Boxing News".

FLASHBACKS and GOLDEN MEMORIES
*This story will attempt to cover some of the highlights of the stories.
(photo: Kenny Lindsay, 1940)


THE MANY FACES AND NAMES OF BC BOXING
*A good starting point for the story is to touch base on the many coaches 
and officials of amateur boxing and some of theese are found in the 
flurry of stories under the title of "BOXING BC OIFFICIALS AND COACHES:
and can be found at http://zelley-boxing.blogspot.ca/
The first story in the above link was in 2009 and takes us back
to 1980 and the re-election of FRED FULLER as president of 
the BRITISH COLUMBIA AMATEUR BOXING ASSOCIATION.

THE MANY TOURNAMENTS OF BOXING IN BC BOXING
*Throughout the decades there have been many tournaments but 
the ultimate tournament on an bais is the GOLDEN GLOVES
that began in 1939 and was heldd in Vancouver.  Other tournaments
have been introduced along the way with a range of stories including
the various revivals from Silver Gloves to Buckskin Gloves and the
various lives of the Diamond Belt tournaments in the Fifties, Sixties
 and the 1980 revival in Victoria, BC.  Some of the history is found
on the LINK:  http://bzgloves.blogspot.ca/
The above link covers Golden Gloves and Diamond Belt action.
I have also documented some of the history in Wikipedia:
http://en.wikipedia.com/wiki/BC_Golden_Gloves
This includes reference to the first Golden Gloves
tournament called "The Sun Golden Gloves" of 1939,
also some early winners of the Seattle Golden Gloves
in the Forties such as Gordon Grayson, Jackie Turner
and Vic Murdoch.  Also, reference to the 1945
Golden Boy, Chester Orr.

RECOGNIZING SOME THROUGH A HALL OF FAME:
*Based on the history of the sport and the many contributions
to the sport, more past members in boxing should have been
recognized in the BC SPORTS HALL of FAME.  But, alas
that as of 2012, it is just restricted to Seven members with a boxing
connection and for some of those seven it was not easy getting them inducted,

"VAST VISION MUST IMPROVE OUR SIGHT"
*One alternative to the various provincial and  regional halls of fame,
was for persons that have been involved in amateur boxing to take
the initiative and create a hall of fame.  Now, although it was firs
mentioned in the BC AMATEUR BOXING NEWS in 1985,
it would take 25 years to establish the British Columbia Amateur
Boxing Hall of Fame in 2010 and in the first two years there are
now 25 inductees which include the 1967 Diamond Belt 
tournament and the Campbell River Eagles Boxing Club
and various individuals and categories including  a Pioneer
section that has one inductee by the name of Tommy Paonessa.












Scattered Pages of BC Amateur Boxing History:
*There are many ways and 
methods to tell the story.
One such series of methods
is through the public pages
of news and views:
http://www.nowpublic.com/b-zelley

BC CLUBS PAST AND PRESENT
*If the boxing club is the classroom for boxers, then it is a must
that we tell the story of past and present clubs and retell a piece
of their history. Starting in the west, the logical beginning would
be Vancouver Island and one area for two clubs with a combined
history that begins in 1963 in Nanaimo Boxing history:
http://nanaimoboxing.blogspot.ca/ This link covers some
of the history of the Newcastle and Nanaimo Boxing Clubs.
But there have been many more clubs ins such places as
Golde River, Campbell River, Comox, Parksville, Port Alberni,
Ladysmith, Chemainus, Crofton, Sooke and Greater Victoria.
*A club that began in 1976
to replace the London Boxing Club
Other clubs have since replaced
the athletics boxing program
beginning with the Victoria 
Jaycees that began in the late
Seventies through Lou Bujdoso,
and a recent club is the 
Capital City Boxing Club.


CLUBS DECADE BY DECADE
Over the decades there have been many clubs, and over time they
pass into the history books.  Some of the long running clubs in
British Columbia still active include the Prince George club
the Spruce Capital Warriors Boxing Club with one of  the first
persons to be involved was Irving Mann, father of Harold and
grandfather of Laurie Mann.  Another club of long term
activity is the Cranbrook Eagles Boxing Club with one of the
early coaches being Michael Moore and one of the early stars
of the club being Derrick Hoyt, who now lives in Victoria and is
a ring official and at one time was a coach of the Sooke Amateur
Boxing Club which recently has been revived.

Cranbrook Boxing in the here and now

CLUBS of THE SIXTIES:
Starting with Vancouver Island, some of the boxing clubs
included the London Boxing Club in Victoria, the 
Newcastle Boxing Club in Nanaimo, and the 
Port Alberni Boxing Club in Port Alberni. In 1969,
a club in Campbell River was starting to take shape
but the Campbell River Eagles Boxing Club would
not be registered until 1970.

Some well known clubs in the Greater Vancover and 
Lower Mainland includes the Richmond Boxing Club,
Ladner Boxing Club, Langley Boxing Club, the 
Vancouver Firefighters, Astoria Boxing Club, the
East Vancouver Optimists Boxing Club, the Hastings
Community Centre Boxing Club, the Surrey Club,
the South Burnaby Boxing Club and the North West
Eagles boxing club.  Then at one time there was a club
based in the Haney Correctional facility, and ones in 
such places as 100 Mile House and then a high profile
one was the Prince George based Spruce Capital Boxing
Club. 

BOXING CLUBS of 1972\
* AAC * Astoria * Chilliwac * Cloverdale * Coquitlam
* Cranbrook * Firefighters * Hastings * Ladner * Langley
* Mount Pleasant * MSA * Nanaimo * North West Eagles
* Police Coup Legion * Richmond * Simon Fraser *
* Spruce Capital (Prince George)  Surrey * Victoria Boy's Club.

The Vancouver Firefighters and the North Vancouver
North West Eagles were coming to the end of their life cycle,
but throughout the Seventies other clubs would appear
such as the revival of the London Boxing Club, but in 1976
it would be replaced by the Victoria Athletic Association.

BOXING CLUBS of 1985:
*Astoria * Burnaby Eagles * Burns Lake 
* Campbell  River Eagles * Capital Hill 
* Cranbrook EE * Crofton * Douglas College
* Elk Valley * Gold River * Hastings 
* Invermere * Kelowna * Kamloops
* Kamloops Lions * Kimberley * Kingsway
* Comox Valley * Ladner * Falkland * Kermide 
* Lake Babine * Maple Ridge * Nanaimo 
* Olympus * Parksville-Qualicum * Pavilion
* Port Kells * Spruce Capitol * Prince Rupert
* Firt St, John * Queensborough * North Shore
* Point Grey * Revelstoke * Richmond * Seton Lake
* Shamrock * Squamish * Sunshine Coast * Trojan Horse
* Vernon * Victoria Jaycees * Williams Lake Boxing Club 

1972 THE NAMES BEHIND THE BOXING CLUBS OF BC
























* Over time nothing stays the same, as the years rolled by    

many of these clubs would fade away, but some would remain
but even then the names of those in charge would change.  

By the mid-Seventies, two of the top two clubs would end
including the North West Eagles in North Vancouver and
the Firefighters in Vancouver.  One of the last warriors of 
the Firefighters boxing club was Gordie Lawson.



















Also, the boxing club at the Victoria Boy's Club would
fold and be re-sponsored by the London Boxing Club
until 1976 when it was replaced by the
Victoria Athletic Association:














But, over time as we moved in the active years of the Eighties,
the Victoria Jaycees Boxing Club that was started by 
Lou Bujdoso would be the only club in the capital city.

THE EIGHTIES would be a good decade for boxing
on a local level,  a provincial level and on a National basis
along with International competition.

THE CANADIAN AMATEUR BOXING WALL OF FAME
*The selection of 55 included some from British Columbia
including: Roger Adolph, Pat O'Reilly sn., Harold Mann,
Dick Findlay, Freddy Fuller and Frankie Scott.
for details for the first list of inductees for January 1, 2013
http://cabhof.blogspot.ca/

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