BVBA Newsletter Archives
Compiled by Robert Winkler, © 2017 MEW Press International, Burlington, Vermont
Bulletin Board listings may at times reflect strong opinions on boxing issues. VBH&IPR reserves the right to edit entries.
Table of Contents
Buffalo Veteran Boxers Association, Ring #44 - Bulletin Board - Burlington (Vermont) History - Chicago Bound - European Boxing - IBHF - IBRO - Just of Starters - Newspaper Articles - Obits - References - Vermont Golden Gloves
Vermont Boxing Control Board - Director of Professional Regulation - @sec.state.vt.us
Buffalo Veteran Boxers Association, Ring #44
BVBA Mission - To create, form, establish and maintain a benevolent association to benefit active and retired boxers; to promote the general welfare of active and retired boxers; to solicit, collect and otherwise raise funds to help offset the medical expenses of ill and disabled veteran boxers; to promote, foster and advance in every lawful manner, the common interests and goals of those engaged in the sport of boxing; to foster and promote interest in boxing; to promote and provide social and athletic recreation for its members; to disseminate information to the general public concerning the activities of the organization; to work in concert with other similarly constituted organizations with the same or similar objectives; to raise funds and solicit donations from interested individuals, charitable, educational and scientific organizations and foundations, and other interested organizations and foundations, agencies, insitutions, associations and corporations and to administer and expend such funds in furtherance of the corporate goals and purposes; to hold, organize and conduct meetings, social events and functions to promote the sport of boxing; to promote, foster and encourage interest in athletics and physical exercise and generally to endeavor to improve the health and welfare of active and retired boxers by available means and methods.
Annual Membership/July 1, 2004 - June 30, 2005 is $15. Please send check or money order to BVBA, c/o Jim Brown, Treasurer, 970 Baseline Rd., Grand Island, NY 14072
BVBA Ring 44 12th Annual Hall of Fame Banquet [edited]
July 2008 Newsletter and Banquet Information
April 2008 - BVBA Newsletter - Golden Gloves and Boxing Legends.
February 2008 BVBA Newsletter - Western NY Golden Gloves
December 2007 Newsletter and Niagara District Association Box-off at McKinley High School.
November Buffalo Veteran Boxers Association Newsletter
October BVBA Newsletter - 2007. **New pdf format. Upon receiving first page click on "Pages" upper left hand of screen. The rest of the pages will appear in a column. Click each separate page for viewing.
May Newsletter - 2007: Inductees
March 2007 Newsletter and Golden Gloves Program
November 2006 - November BVBA meeting and Jerry Collin's book.
October 2006 - BVBA Newsletter
August 2006 - Review of recent BVBA activities.
July 6, 2006 - 10th Annual Hall of Fame Dinner will be held on Friday, August 11, 2006 [$35/person] at Salvatore's Italian Gardens, 6461 Transit Road, Depew, New York. Honoring Western New York's Boxing Legends George "Big Boy" Brackey* [Heavyweight 1934-1946], Danny Diliberto [Lightweight 1957-1959], Charlie Murray* [Promoter 1900-1950], Dick Topinko [Lightweight 1968-1971], Ted Whitfield* [Welterweight 1964-1968], and Msgr. Franklin Kelliher* [Boxer/Promoter/Trainer 1938-1973]. Ticket Purchase Deadline: August 4th. Call Jack Green, President [716-856-9365] or mail check payable to BVBA Ring #44 directly to: Jim Brown, Treasurer, 269 White Oak Lane, Grand Island, New York 14072. *Deceased
May 2006 Newsletter and 10th Annual
March 3, 2006 - On March 24-25, Western NYS Golden Gloves Championships will take place at the Gilbert Lay Sports Arena, 11093 Route 5, in Irving at 7pm both evenings - after an absence of 31 years. It's being brought back into the Buffalo area by former Golden Glover Billy Abrams, head coach for the hosting club - the Seneca Nation Boxing Club.
Billy, along with club president and coach Mike Tome and coach Jimmy Wilder have worked very hard to help make this happen.
It's quite the honor to be selected as Regional Director of the Western Regional Golden Gloves Championships. The last Western Golden Gloves Tournament was held in Buffalo in 1975 by Msgr. Franklin Kelliger of the Buffalo working Boys Home. I will work very had to make this as exciting as it was then. We have some very talented boxers here - thanks to good solid coaching from all the area clubs.
Those that win here will advance to the NYS Golden Gloves championships in Syracuse April 7-8 to compete with eastern and central champions for the state title. Open class seniors who win there go on to the nationals in Omaha, Nebraska, April 24th and 29th to try for a national championship.
I'm very pleased to play an important role in helping to bring this back to the Buffalo area. We are working very hard to bring this tournament together and could use much more help in the way of sponsorships. Those who can help in any way, please feel free to call Billy at 716-945-5473. Thanks!
January 2006 Newsletter from BVBA President Jack Green
November 2005 - Frank's Sunny Italy
August 2005 - 9th Annual Hall of Fame Banquet
April 2005 Spring Newsletter - BVBA
March 2005 BVBA Winter Newsletter
February 2005 BVBA Newsletter
November 2004 BVBA News
August 2004 BVBA Monthly Meeting
August 13, 2004 Banquet & Dinner Inductees and Speakers
Jack Green, President BVBA Ring #44
Bert Sugar- Sports Historian
Vinnie Cala - Lightweight 1960-1969
Vic Eisen - Featherweight 1946-1955
Allen Faulkner - Welterweight 1945-1948; and Record
Tommy Hicks - "The Fighting Schoolteacher" 1967-1974
Jack Singer - Amateur Fighter, Manager, Promoter, Matchmaker, Owner of Singer's Gym 1921-1949
Art Weigand - Light Heavyweight 1922-1931.
July 2004 BVBA Summer News
June 2004 BVBA News Letter from Jack Green
May 2004 News Report by BVBA President, Jack Green
April 2004 News Items
The annual BVBA Banquet and Dinner will once again be held at Salvatore's, Friday, August 13, 2004. A selection committee is currently looking into potiential candidates to be inducted in the BVBA Hall of Fame, which will hopefully be finalized at the April 14th meeting.
Saturday, May 8, 2004, Ron Toy and the South Buffalo Boxing Club will be sponoring "Fight Night at the Holidays!" Advance tickets $10, $15 at the door - which opens at 6pm - at the Holidays Sports Facilities, 935 Harlem Road, West Seneca. There will be a guest appearance by Les Ralston. For further information contact Ron at: 716-822-8178 or 716-713-2797.
A decision by an international Native American organization has temporarily derailed bringing the North Amerian Indigenous Games to the Buffalo-Niagara region next year. More information will be posted as available.
June 25, 2003 - Newsletter
It is with great pride and honor that BVBA announces the six outstanding representatives of Buffalo's rich boxing history that have been selected and approved by Ring #44 to be officially inducted into The Buffalo Veteran Boxing Association Hall of Fame! These include: Frankie Schoell [Middleweight 1918-1930], Johnny Sudac [Manager/Trainer], Bobby Scanlon [Lightweight 1954-1966], Jackie Donelly [Lightweight 1958-1963], Tony LaBarbra [Lightweight 1959-1969], and Stan Fitzgerald [Lightweight 1959-1961]. Also scheduled on the agenda is the Ring #44 "Honor of the Year Award" presentation. A very deserving Joe Cardina has been selected to receive this award. The Hall of Fame Banquet will again be held at Salvatore's Italian Garden Restaurant on Friday, August 15, 2003.
President Jack Green continues to emphasize the great job that Ring #44 and it's officers and members are doing in the boxing community - including Recording Secretary Bob Caico, who is a regular contributor to Sports and Leisure - a local, free sports paper with a very wide circulation.
Joe Mesi, the heart of boxing in Buffalo, who has already fulfilled the promise of bringing big time boxing back to Buffalo, will be going after Part II of his commitment to himself and his Buffalo family, as well as his many fans throughout the world - when he appears at the HSBC Arena on Tuesday, June 24th seeking his first title. Local home grown contender Ross Thompson will lead a strong undercard. For details see http://www.Buffalonews.com - [The heavyweight from Sweet Home High needed only 80 seconds and about five punches to send Robert Davis crashing to the canvas Tuesday night in front of an HSBC Arena crowd of 10,848 and an ESPN2 national audience. Mesi raised his record to 26-0 with 24 KOs and won the vacant North American Boxing Federation championship belt].
Another super hometown product, Les Ralston is scheduled to fight on ESPN Tuesday Night Fights to be nationally telecast from Youngstown, Ohio on Tuesday, July 1st. [Les (12-0) KO'd Yussef Robinson (Raleigh, North Carolina) in the third round]; Hector Alejandro (3-1, 1KO) of Buffalo knocked out Utica's Jason Bouvouso (5-2) at 49 seconds of the third round in a scheduled four-round junior welterweight bout at Turning Stone Casino in Verona.
Our amateurs are representing our area just as strongly as the pros. Nick Casal of Casal's Boxing Clubin Niagara Falls, and Blanca Cruz of Buffalo's West Ferry P.A.L., are leaders among a large contingent of successful amateur boxers in Western New York. Nick won the "Golden Boy" award recently at a show where he defeated four time Golden Gloves Champion Demetrius Tatum from Rochester. He went on to the National Golden Gloves Championship in Las Vegas. Blanca won the 119 lb open Golden Gloves Championship in Syracuse. She now qualifies for the Women's National GG title to be held in Chicago in August. In the meantime she'll stop by in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida in July for the 2003 USA Women's National Championships. In other local boxing news, Roy Brasch and the Lackawanna Boxing Club will be hosting a "show" on July 26th - at the Friendship House on Ridge Rd in Lackawanna.
June 4, 2003 - Baby Joe Mesi is scheduled to fight Robert Davis on June 24th at HSBC Arena. A Post-fight Party which will benefit the "Baby Joe Mesi's Fight for Organ Donation, Inc." will be held at the HSBC Arena Harbour Club immediately following the fight. If you wish to purchase tickets - at $35 each - enclose a check by June 18th to: Julie M. Bargnesi, Damon & Morey, LLP, 298 Main St., 1000 Cathedral Place, Buffalo, NY 14202.
April 9, 2003 - Ring #44 Newsletter
The Daemen College Community Service Awards affair (March 30, 2003), honoring Joe Mesi, was a great success! They were truly ecstatic over the attendance. Joe's presence attracted more than double the previous record of ticket sales and participation. As usual, Joe showed great class - and again demonstrated his great insight into the needs of this community, and how his passion to fulfill his destiny (both inside and outside of the ring) can and does promote positive humanitarian results. In his acceptance remarks, Joe was kind enough to include Ring #44 as a valuable part of his support system. As a result, Dick Wipperman, John Tedesco and Jack Green, had a great time at the table with the Mesi family who infused great credibility and respect to our public image and that of amateur and professional boxing!
A new project that was introduced by John Dulinawka is getting started, and has already captured the interest and appreciation of the boxing community. It was John's idea that Ring #44 could, and should, institute a Directory of Boxing Gyms and Training Facilities available to the youth of our community. It was voted on and approved by the membership. Bob Caico and Jack Green have started to visit and communciate with various gyms with this undertaking. Last week they were at the Pal Gym on West Ferry, and they also attended the "Grand Opening" of Aimer Abdullah's Lockport Athletic and Fitness Center, at 6017 So. Transit Road, Lockport, New York 14094. This facility is "first class" all the way!
Speaking of Bob Caico, check out the April 2003 edition of Sports and Leisure. The article titled "Local Boxing Roundup," on page 24, is a very good and informative piece on the local boxing scene. Bob captured much information on the featured boxers from local gyms, and included an update on Ring #44's progress. We have a great opportunity to fulfill a vast network of needs within the boxing community - and we will have much more of an impact on our sport this year and for years to come. Great job Bob!
Cheektowaga junior middleweight Henry Humphrey improved to 6-0, with a fourth-round KO of Tom Wilts of Altoona, Pennsylvania, in a scheduled six-rounder at the Turning Stone Casino in Verona. Humphrey, who is managed and trained by David Bishop, has won all his fights by knockouts.
Lennox Lewis's camp and Mike Tyson's camp - and Team Mesi are exploring all kinds of possibilities and scenarios for a "Blockbuster" mega fight in Buffalo in June. Ralph Wilson Stadium is being considered a prime potential site. There is talk that all three "Outstanding Pugilists" will be featured on the same card!
Item of Interest: Cummings, Bevin. "Bohemia Found." Heart & Soul (May 2003): 86-88. A great little article about Janine Green (Jack's daughter) - model and actress, and her family and Harlem brownstone home.
March 18, 2003 - Ring #44 Newsletter
A general announcement that the second Wednesday of every month at 7:00 PM will be the new permanent meeting date.
The new elected officers are as follows: President - Jack Green, VP - Jerry Collins, Treasurer - Jim Brown, Recording Secretary - Joe Cardina, Corresponding Secretary - Bob Caico, and Sergeant-at-Arms - John Tedesco. Congratulations to all! Also, an official thanks to Jerry Collins, Jim Brown, Joe Cardina, John Tedesco and Angelo Prospero (group historian) for their unselfish commitment to the leadership of the BVBA - great job guys!
It's official! Joe Cardina has been selected to be recognized and honored as "Our Person of the Year." Congratulations Joe, you definitely deserve it!
Announcement - Upcoming Event! The Daemen College Associates Community Service Awards will honor Baby Joe Mesi on Sunday, March 30, 2003 at Noon - at the Park Country Club, 4949 Sheridan Dr., Williamsville, New York. For additional information contact Jack Green at 716-856-9395 or Chairperson Babbidean Huber at 716-839-9185. This affair is a double source of optimism for us. It's a very well deserved accolade for Joe, and an excellent opportunity for Ring #44 to show our support and recognition for his leadership beyond the ring and into the community.
On a separate occasion Ms. Huber donated a special pair of boxing gloves to Ring #44, which will be put on permanent display in our Hall of Fame. These gloves represnet the "Corps Boxing Champions - England 1944." They are autographed by the entire boxing team and her uncle who was coach/boxer. She has also consented to be our guest at this year's dinner and formally present this outstanding piece of history to our organization.
Joey Giambra's son, Joe Junior of Las Vegas, is lobbying for his Dad to get introduced to the ballot for induction into the World Boxing Hall of Fame in Canastota. He's looking for support from the BVBA.February 8, 2003 - Ring #44 Newsletter
The next meeting is on Wednesday, February 19th at 7 PM. Final votes and installation of new officers will be the first order of business at this meeting. At this time the slate is as follows: President, Jack Green; Vice President, Jerry Collins; Treasurer, Jim Brown; Recording Secretary, Joe Cardina; Corresponding Secretary, Bob Caico; and Sargeant-at-Arms, John Tedesco. Anyone wishing to enter the race, or would like to nominate a candidate please contact Jim Brown at 716-773-5591 (970 Baseline Rd., Grand Island, NY 14072), or John Tedesco at 716-875-0518 (131 Fordham Ave., Buffalo, NY 14216).
At this time we have agreed upon Friday, August 15, 2003 as the date for our "Hall of Fame Dinner." The Venetian Room at Salvatore's Italian Garden has been secured for that date. Also, the group has affirmed that we will have an "Honor of The Year" Award this year, and Joe Cardina has been nominated and seconded as a candidate ro receive the award.
Please note that the "Downtown Showdown" Boxing Venue, scheduled for Rochester, NY on February 6, 2003 - featuring Buffalo's own Les Ralston, was postponed to a later date, possibly in late March. It is a real treat to start thinking that perhaps we will get a chance to catch some of Les's fights live as he develops a great pro career. Hopefully, we will have the opportunity to give him our support in person. Les knows we are behind him and he is always glad to see his Ring 44 friends and boxing fans.
We caught up with the Mesi camp at one of Joe's many humanitarian appearances while boosting Buffalo and helping to promote a function which was donating much of it's assets to one of Joe's many charitable causes. The big news is of course that Joe has cracked the top ten in the WBA rankings. We discussed many things while at a pool tournament sponsored by Norm Skulski, a local businessman and sports fan. But it is still a real treat to see the Mesi's repond to their public popularity. You can see that they are genuinely at home and appreciative of their fan base. "There is no short cut or easy path on a journey to a destination worth getting to!" It is as clear to us as ever that the Mesi's know exactly what they are doing. [Check out the picture on page 34, of Baby Joe with Sugar Ray Leonard, in the March 2003 issue of Boxing Digest!)
The entire Western New York community recently lost a wonderful person. Tommy Tedesco, the former Olympic Boxing Alternate and member of our Ring #44 Hall of Fame, died Thursday, January 16, 2003, after a brief illness. He was 86. The life of the "Fighting Alter Boy," was as outstanding in its achievement as it was sentimental and entertaining. The Tedesco Family are sincere, wonderful, people and we regret their sorrow.
Indigenous Games Coming to Buffalo in 2005!
Buffalo will host the North American Indigenous Games from July 27 through August 8, 2005. Richard Geiger, President and CEO of the Buffalo Niagara Convention & Visitors Bureau, said the games "will be the largest amateur sporting event in the region in 2005. An economic impact for the event is now projected at more than $12 million."
Geiger said more than 20,000 aboriginal athletes, ages 13 to 22, their coaches, families, spectators and supporters from Turtle Island are expected to attend the games. Turtle Island encompasses the United States and Canada. In their 12 year history, the games have been held only once in the United States.
The 2005 games will include archery, badminton, baseball, softball, boxing, canoeing, golf and other sports, as well as Tae Kwon Do, hoop dancing and a social powwow, Geiger said. He continued by saying that Buffalo submitted the successful bid to host the Games last week at the meeting in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.
"This event differs from other major multisport events of this kind because of the magnitude of the cultural component," said Kris Wood, sports market account executive for the Convention Bureau. "This aspect truly makes the Games much more than an event, but a holistic experience." Buffalo News, December 20, 2002.
December 12, 2002 - Abridged Minutes from the Ring 44 monthly meeting, by Recording Secretary, Joe Cardina.
President Jack Green opened the meeting by thanking members for their cooperation and efforts during the past year. He also mentioned that an election of officers is to be held soon and that members should give some thought to nominating candidates for office. He remarked that he would depend more on "active" members in the future, and would ask members to participate in making Ring 44 even more successful.
Jack noted that Ring 44 is gaining recognition because of the success of local amateur and pro boxers. He cited a recent TV request for him to appear with Ring 44 members Dick Wipperman and Rocky Fumerelle - during which Jack gave a brief history of boxing in Buffalo. Jack will show a tape of the show at a future meeting.
Jack also spoke of the successful boxing shows in Niagara Falls and Lockport, and that the group should consider a fight card sponsored by Ring 44. It's important to note that any show sponsored by us will be "user friendly" to all of the amateur boxing community in Western New York. Our priority at Ring 44 is to promote and defend the welfare of the entire Boxing Community, and these principles come before our own personalities.
Jack continued by saying that he will increase contact with other Rings of the Veteran Boxing Association who are aware of our efforts in Buffalo. Jules Spada is Recording Secretary for The International Veteran Boxer Association, Ring #25 - who is also a member of our chapter. Jules keeps us up to date with the information he provides in their newsletter, and Jack will continue to open lines of communication with people like Jules - to exchange ideas on administrative procedures at the higher levels.
There was a lengthy discussion about securing a permanent home for the Hall of Fame. We also plan to re-activate the Boxing Museum as a great backdrop and compliment to the display of inductees. Location, security, and traffic are being considered, and all ideas are most welcome. Plans are being made and some local sites are being offered for consideration. This is in a very early stage, but it is a great start. Again, all suggestions are welcome!
General comments by President Jack Green
Marty Resnick is a sports reporter based in Toronto, Ontario, who attended our dinner as a guest representing the press. He wrote a tremendously positive review of our dinner, and it was published in the November issue of Ring Sports Magazine of Reno, Nevada. He has strong ties with Angelo Prospero, and thanks to Ange and his efforts, we are enjoying the benefits of this quality contact. Thanks Marty - the article was excellent!
The Evening of Champions - Fall Fight Fest 2002, hosted by the Casal Boxing Club, was truly an outstanding show! The match-ups were tremendous, the competition fierce, and the atmosphere electric. Veteran Former Regional Amateur Boxing Commissioner Tommy Stenhouse, and Ring 44 Vice President, Jerry Collins and I really enjoyed this exciting event.
I know that we are all still recovering from the exitement of the team Mesi victory but those of us who caught Joe on Empire Sports Fan TV, were treated to the real strength that we all know Joe has as his stature rises on the national scene. The International Boxing community is honing in on his wit, charm and natural ability - to convey his quality personality. His interview was great...and it was a very positive example of just how strong the Mesi bond with this community is.
"Buffalonians Enjoy Fight Night in Carolina"
Buffalo boxers had a good night against North Carolina fighters in Raleigh lately. Middeweight Les Ralston stopped Ed Goins in two rounds. Former Buffalo heavyweight Paul Marinaccio won an unanimous decision over Giles Knox. Also, Junior middleweight Henry Humphery stopped Lavelle McLurkin in the first round, but officials ruled a "no contest" after McLurkin fell from an apparent knee injury.
Hats off to John Cummiskey who was recently mentioned in an article in the local Bradford, Pennsylvannia News. The Times Herald cites our own Ring 44 member for being instrumental in helping to secure some very inspirational and artisitc productions which were included in the Sketches of War - life on display, in the Bradford library. John is a friend of artist Norman Maffei, of Franklinville, and was able to coordinate the inclusion of quite a few sketches in this display. Way to go John!September 4, 2002 - General News of Interest
A couple of days after the August banquet, Dan Muscato, Tommy Tedesco, Prentiss Hall, and Tommy Stenhouse, went down to Cleveland, Ohio - to visit Jimmy Bivens. We were told that it was a great time and everybody was deeply touched. The Bivens family was very appreciative of the visit, and everybody had fun. Also, Jerry Collins recently stopped in and checked on Bill Moore and John Cummisky in Bradford, Pennsylvannia. Again, it was a good visit and there was talk that they might come up for the next BVBA meeting. Both occasions are prime examples of BVBA members fulfilling our mission as stated above!
"Baby" Joe Mesi is bringing it back to Bufallo again! This time he is taking on David Izon - a 1992 Olympic Silver medallist with a (27-4 & 23 KO's) record. The scheduled 10-round bout will be the main event on an ESPN2 "Friday Night Fights" telecast. This is another powerful statement by the Mesi camp because David Izon is on many boxing experts list of necessary opponents - and also suggested by our own Angelo Prospero. There also promises to be a great undercard and we are looking forward to coming out to the HSBC Arena and showing the world how strong we are behind Joe!
We are all glad to hear that Les Ralston is still wowing them in Summerville, South Carolina. This time Les fought his first 6 rounder. After knocking Burt Gorden down three times - Les went on to KO him in the 2nd round. Keep it up Les - you're bringing a lot of excitement to the game!
Nick Casal - the son of Ray & Lesli Casal - won the National Junior Olympics Championship in the 156 lb Division. The Tournament was held in Marquette, Michigan this past July. On his way to being awarded the "Most Outstanding Boxer" of the tournament, Nick stopped three of his first four opponents, and won the Championship in a 5-0 decision over Jonathan Nelson of Little Rock, Arkansas. Also, in the 13-14 year old intermediates, Anthony Casal won the National Junior Golden Gloves in the 132 lb Division; Joey Trusello in the 85 lb Division, and John Harless in the 201 weight class. Great job!August 9, 2002 - Linking the Past with the Future - 6th Annual Hall of Fame Dinner Banquet Huge Success!
Ladies and Gentlemen! With over 330+ BVBA members, inductee family members, and guests - the annual banquet honoring six Western New York Boxing Legends was a showcase of past glories and future hopes. Held in the "stellar" accomodations of Salvatore's Italian Gardens, in Depew, New York, the evening was filled with the stories and dreams of boxers and fans. A complete review of the six inductees: Rocky "the Blond Bomber" Fumerelle, Dick Wipperman, Sam "the Atomic Muscle" Butera, Art (Tiger) Foster, Vic "the Black Bomber" Brown, and Jimmy "the Duke of Lockport" Duffy - will follow in these pages. For now, let it be said, that comments by boxing historian Angelo Prospero, former Canadian Heavyweight Champion George Chuvalo, and heavyweight contender Joe Mesi highlighted the event. But most of all there was the sense of brotherhood - of individuals and families coming together to celebrate the past, take joy in the present, and express their dreams for the future of boxing in Western New York. Among the future projects Ring #44 will be involved in are: helping to host, along with the Buffalo Sports Society, the University of Buffalo, and the City of Buffalo, the 2005 North American Indigenous Games (for general information about these games see - http://www.2002naig.com); the building of a Hall of Fame Museum; and giving our total support behind heavyweight contender Joe Mesi and other "rising stars" from the Buffalo area. Many thanks to all those - past and present - that have given generously of their time and energy to bring such well deserved success to Ring #44!July 2002 - Great News! As expected, Joe Mesi remains undefeated by scoring a 5th round TKO over Talmadge Griffis. Joe thrilled the boxing public with a stunning victory in the sweltering heat of Scottsdale, Arizona on June 7th. This was a televised featured headliner in ESPN2's Friday Night at the Fights. The Mesi camp & their promoters are really fulfilling their promises to the community & Baby Joe is setting a great pace & powerful standard for Western New York!
Les Ralston has fulfilled his mission by enchanting the Summerville Boxing community for a second time. His first performance was so impressive, that the promoters brought him back! He totally outclassed Sam Diggers (7-6). Les floored Sam 30 seconds into the first round. Then he unleashed a barrage of 16 straight punches as he scored a 1 minute, 5 second - first round KO. The fans loved him, and Les is already signed to fight there again on the last Thursday of July. Angelo Prospero really takes pride in the Buffalo connection that the Ralston's bring to the South Carolina boxing scene.
More News - Casal's Boxing Club is proud of their representation in the amateur ranks. Niagara Falls High School Junior Terry Carter recently became the first heavyweight from the city to win the NYS Golden Gloves Championsip. Carl Davis (125 lbs) also won his division. Both boxers will compete at the National Golden Gloves.
Patty Wiesmore (132 lbs), and Deb Krebs (139 lbs) won the Women's Open Championship in their respective weight classes.
Sixteen year old Nick Casal topped off winning a few championship tournaments by being honored as the recipient of the "Overall Champion Award of the NYS Golden Gloves Tournament. Continued success to all of our kids!
June 2002 - Nationally ranked Baby Joe Mesi takes his (22 wins, 0 losses, and 20 KOs) record on the road. He'll face Talmadge Griffis on June 7 - ESPN 2 Priday Night at the fights. The bout will take place outdoors at The Rawhide Wild West Town Theme Park in Scottsdale, Arizona. Also, Congratulations to Les Ralston, who took his pro record to the Plex Arena in Charlestown, So. Carolina, and totally outclassed Justin Mays in a four rounder!
May 2002 - 6th Annual "Hall of Fame" Dinner Banquet - Salvatore's Italian Gardens, 6461 Transit Road, Depew, New York - Friday, August 9, 2002 - 6-11 PM. Tickets @$35 - send check or Money Order to: BVBA Rings #44, Jim Brown, Treasurer, 970 Baseline Rd, Grand Island, NY 14072
Congratulations to Baby Joe and his spectacular victory over Keith McKnight. Also, former nationally ranked amateur & Golden Gloves medal winner DeMario Crittenden of Niagara Falls for winning his pro debut against Ray Morales!
April 2002 - New Buffalo Veteran Boxers Association Officers for 2002-2003: President, Jack Green; Vice President, Jerry Collins; Treasurer, Jim Brown; Secretary, Joe Cardina; Sergeant-at-Arms, John Tedesco.
Inductees of the 2002 Class - BVBA Hall of Fame: Rocky Fumerelle, Middleweight 1956-63 (Buffalo); Dick Wipperman, Heavyweight 1961-68 (Buffalo); Sam Butera, Outstanding amateur & professional boxer (Buffalo); Art Foster (Posthumously), Lightweight 1940-46 (Buffalo); Vic Brown (Posthumously), Heavyweight (Buffalo); and James "Jimmy" Duffy (Posthumously) 138 lb weight class 1909-1920 (Lockport). The induction banquet will be in August.Past Messages : Sugar Ray Leonard presents Buffalo Blast featuring "Baby Joe" Mesi at the University of Buffalo Alumni Arena on April 5th - televised nationally on ESPN2. Tickets can be purchased at UB Ticket Hotline: 645-6666 or call 1-800-223-6000. Tickets are available at Alumni Arena Box Office and all Tickets.com outlets, including all Tops Friendly Markets.
Watch AM Buffalo - Friday, March 1st, at 10:00 AM. Baby Joe and the rest of the cast members of the Variety Club Telethon will be guests on the show. Then all cast members will proceed to Children's Hospital to visit the children. Baby Joe and the Variety Club Telethon Cast will also be signing autographs at the Walden Galleria Mall located in front of Kaufmans on the lower level from Noon - 4 PM. Come out and get your autograph!February 2002 - Attending members of the monthly meeting were joined by Frank and Khadija Merriweather, of the Buffalo Criterion - a local newspaper. These friends of our organization were happy with what they saw, and did a quality photo layout.
The Border Explosion USA vs Canada boxing show presented by Abdallah's Gym and Fight Night Promotions on Saturday, January 5, 2002, was a smashing success. Every match was great, competetive and exciting! Abdallah says there will be more to come. Also, Bo Bilicki deserves so much credit for his outstanding displays of boxing history and memorabilia - which adds so much "class" and generates so much interest at these events. Please keep up the good work Bo - we need you!
Our Hall of Fame Dinner will be held this year on Friday, August 9, 2002, at Salvatore's. The selection committee is currently in the discussion stage.
We have been approached recently by a group of people that are lobbying to get former world featherweight champion Tommy Paul nominated and elected (posthumously) into the Buffalo Sports Hall of Fame. Part of our letter of support reads: "Tommy Paul is one of six world boxing champions to represent our great city of Buffalo. These great athletes won their titles between 1899 - 1933. Mr. Paul was featherweight champion of the world between 1932 -33. It is also important to know that during the reigning era of our six world champions, there were exactly eight weight divisions which produced one champ per weight class! The BVBA hopes you grant him this great honor!"
We have recently been contacted by a movie production outfit in Quebec for our pugilistic input and advise.
We also received a letter from Christer Franzen of Sweden, who is researching Swedish pugs between 1899 - 1969, at which time professional boxing was outlawed in Sweden. He has read Jerry Collins' book, When Boxing Was Big in BuffaloMany Swedes fought in New York, and in particular the Buffalo area. He'd appreciate any information about boxers with Swedish connections.January 2002 - Monthly meetings are held the first Wednesday of each month at 140 Niagara Street Shoreline Apartments Community Room - 7 PM. Current officers are: Jack Green, President; Lou Muscato, VP; Jim Brown, Treasurer; Joe Cardina, Secretary, and John Tedesco, Sergeant-at-Arms.
Jack Green, President BVBA
Baby Joe Mesi, has a web site for fans to visit at: http://www.babyjoemesi.com
Team Mesi (21-0) has been talking to every pormoter about a potential fight, with the eye toward National TV exposure. Joe's ultimate goal is to become the Heavyweight Champion of the World and to be able to say - "I am from Buffalo, New York!"December, 2001 - When Boxing Was Big in Buffalo: 1881-1951 researched by Jerry Collins - this 75 page spiral bound book reviews Buffalo, New York's very active early boxing scene. Taken from personal accounts, newspaper articles, pictures, and Ring #44 BVBA membership encouragement - descriptions of fights from Flyweight to the Heavyweight Division are retold. Copies are available at $8 - contact Jerry at 716-683-6199.
March, 2001 - The following names are the 2001 inductees of the Buffalo Veteran Boxers Association Ring #44 Hall of Fame and will be honored and officially enshrined at our annual Hall of Fame Dinner Banquet at Salvatore's Italian Gardens Restaurant on Friday August 10, 2001.
Paul "Red" Carr (Postumously) - Amateur lightweight boxer while in the service during WWI. Legendary manager of Buffalo's two world boxing champions, Jimmy Goodrich and Jimmy Slattery.
Jackie Donovan (Postumously) - Top middleweight contender 1938 -1940s. Fought notable fighters as Tommy Tedesco and Jimmy Clark.
Tommy Tedesco - Top national amateur lightweight 1933 - 1937. Was a member of the 1936 Olympic boxing team in Germany (1936).
Bobby Claus - Top welterweight contender 1943 - 1949. Fought Johnny Green, Tippy Larkin, Tony Zale, and Rocky Graziano.
Charlie Basile - Amateur lightweight boxer during the 1940s. Devoted his life to the sport of boxing as an amateur boxing official - refereeing over 3,000 amateur bouts.
John "Spider" Thompson - Top amateur bantamweight champion 1948 -1950s.February, 2001 - BVBA Ring #44
Our Annual Hall of Fame Dinner will be held on Friday, August 10, 2001 at Salvatore's Italian Gardens, and six Hall of Fame inductees have been selected. More information will be availabale after the February meeting.
Congratulations to the Mesi Family - Joe has signed with a European promoter who is also involved in the American scene. Joe will be furthering his career with some overseas bouts while continuing to explore his stateside options.
Great News! our own Roy Brasch & Ron Toy via the Lackawanna Boxing Club will be sponsoring a show on March 4 at the VFW Post in Lackawanna, 2909 So. Park Ave - across the street from Ron Jaworski Stadium. They are hosting a team of amateur boxers from Ireland and will feature them in matches with a team of selected boxers from throughout this area & other major cities in New York. Tickets for this event are $12, pre-sale, or $15 at the door. Doors will open at 3 PM & the bouts will start at 4. For further information contact Ron at home: 825-4584 or at the Gym (Monday -Friday) after 5 PM at 823-4195. Roy can be reached at 826-3422.
The Chautauqua Sports Hall of Fame, an orgainization that gives recognition to people within Chautauqua County who have excelled in sports on an amateur or professional level or who have volunteered their services to promote athletics in the area, has three membership levels available: Sustaining - $200, Patron - $100, & Contributing - $50. Membership checks can be sent to: Chautauqua Sports Hall of Fame, Marilyn Hale, Treasurer, PO Box 1192, Jamestown, NY 14702-1192.
November 1, 2000 - from the Buffalo Veteran Boxers Association - Ring #44 Newsletter
Upcoming Events: The Lackawanna Boxing Club is sponsoring a show Saturday, November 18th at 7:00 PM at T-Birds Lounge, French & Union Roads in the Plaza. Call Ron Toy or Roy Brasch for tickets at 825-4584.
Congratulations to Vinnie Judge, a member of the Lackawanna Club who recently won his fist amateur boxing match. Great work Vinnie!
Remember - BVBA monthly meetings are held every first Wednesday of the month at 7:00 PM in the "Community Room" at 260 Niagara Street (Shoreline Apartments) - Niagara & Carolina Streets.
March 1, 2000 - Newsletter Release from Jack Green, President BVBA - Those attending the February meeting: Tom Stenshouse, Kevin Gore, Charles Basile, John Tedesco, Joe Cardina, Peter Elia, John Dulinawka, Russ Grisanti, Stan FtizGerald, Lou Muscato, and Jack Green. The following officers were elected: President - Jack Green, Vice President - Lou Muscato, Treasurer - Jim Brown, Sgt at Arms - John Tedesco. The position of Secretary was not filled. Lou, Jim and John have already demonstrated their loyalty to and sense of responsibility for the overall success of our organization. They have sacrificed their personal time, energy, and input on many occasions. They consistantly attend meetings and are always involved in the decision making process. As for me (Jack) I assure you that your confidence in me is a priviledge. My two main goals for this year are: 1) to consistantly strive to be the best that I can be in carrying out my responsibilities as president, and 2) to continue the momentum of the upward mobility of our successful status and public image that we are enjoying from year to year. Remember, meetings are scheduled for the first Wednesday of each month.
Our Annual Dinner Banquet is confirmed for Friday, August 11, 2000 - at Salvatore's Italian Garden.
Saturday, March 11, 2000, our own Roy Brasch and Ron Toy of the Lackawanna Boxing Club will be hosting another of their great shows at the Lackawana Fun House on Abbott Road. Let's show our support! For further ticket information contact Jack at 856-9365.
The Buffalo, New York chapter of the National Veteran Boxers Association, Ring #44, held it's 2nd Annual Hall of Fame Dinner Banquet on October 16, 1998. Inductees included Jimmy Clark (Middleweight), Tom Stenhouse (Lightweight and current Treasurer of BVBA), Joe Gimbrone (Light-Heavyweight), Joe and Phil Muscato (Heavyweights) and Frank Wakefield (Sportswriter)...all "individuals that made their mark in the sport of boxing and brought fame and pride to not only themselves, but also the Niagara Frontier." Yearly membership dues of $12 (7/1-6/30) can be sent to Buffalo Veteran Boxing Association, Ring #44, c/o Dan Muscato, President, 17 Lorain St., Angola, NY 14006-1303.
April 1, 2003 - CBS TV program "The Guardian" starring Simon Baker, with Special Guest Taylor Sheridan as Pittsburgh Ring #46 boxer Tim DiHennick "The Mechanic" trying to stage a comeback after being in prison for four years, so that he can regain custody of his son Oscar. Another example of how pugilistic themes continue to show up in American culture.
March, 2001 - Historical Society of Black Prizefighters - Kevin Smith will be producing a newsletter/journal on the history of black prizefighters, with the first issue projected for April 15. All those interested in submitting photos, stories, magazine or newspaper articles - including stats - are encouraged to contact Kevin at: KSmith9116@aol.com, or submit material to Kevin at 117 Highland Ave., Winchester, MA 01890.
February 18, 1999, Friends of Jimmy Bivins, P.O. Box 02057, Cleveland, Ohio 44102. Jimmy will be inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame on June 13, 1999, in Canastota, New York. Jimmy went 86-25-1 with 31 KO's from 1940 to 1955. He met eleven world champions & defeated eight of them.
To show your support for Jimmy telephone 440/734-7916 or e-mail Larry McDonald at email@example.com
Darrell Banks was finally sentenced in this highly publicized elder-abuse case. After three contiuances, Banks received a sentence of 8-months imprisonment in the Lorain Correctional Facility. All are asked to join in national efforts to recognize and gain appropriate legislation to deal with these crimes. Please call or write your local and state legislators to further this end.
The Burlington Boxing Club, 76 Pear Street, in Burlington (out of business). This gym was run by Joe Winters and Donald Hayes from New York City. It Featured a professional size boxing ring, heavy punching bags, speed bags, double ended bags, and weight training equipment. Gym rates were a monthly fee of $35 and lessons at $25 per hour. For more background stats see the July 30, 1997 edition of the Vermont Times, section 2, page 1.
Steve Rasof, of Chicago, is looking for photos and memorabilia on the late Barney Ross, former 1930s lightweight and 1935 World Welterweight Champion. Steve can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Christer Franzen is writing the history of Swedish Pro Boxing. An article he wrote on Swedish champs appeared in the February 26th edition of the Metro, one of Stockholm's morning papers. Most Swedish fighters in the United States fought in New York, Illinois and California. He can be reached at: email@example.com
International Boxing Hall of Fame
Located off New York State Thruway Exit 34, Canastota, NY. The IBHF Home Page may be foundhere
The International Boxing Research Organization
IBRO is headed by Ralph Citro, considered on of the best cutmen in the business. In 1993 he was awarded the James J. Walker Award by the Boxing Writers Association of America. Along with editorial advisor Luckett Davis, the IBRO Newsletter comes out periodically during the year. Annual membership dues in the United States is $25. Direct inquires to Ralph Citro at 32 North Black Horse Pike, Blackwood, NJ 08012-3040.
Just for Starters
Steve Slesinger of Melbourne, Florida, is looking for old records, and newspaper articles on his grandfather, who fought under the name of Don Labbe. He fought in and around the Boston area in 1937. Steve can be reach at firstname.lastname@example.org
Wayne Miller is searching for any information on Frederick Heider, a German born boxer in the 1930s. He can be reached at: email@example.com
"Keep Punching" Dan Muscato has been putting together a list of boxers coming out of Buffalo, NY and the Niagara Frontier, as far back as the 1890s up to the late 1960s. Over 200 fighters appear on his list. Two who came to Vermont to fight in the 1930s include Sam Bruce and Jack Willis. He can be reach at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Rick Castiglione comments about his good friend Jack Reno, a welterweight boxer who fought from 1933-35 in Vermont, with a record of 36-0-2. Jack was recently awarded the welterweight championship belt at an awards dinner in New Jersey. Rick is trying to make a scrapbook from Jack's fighting days. Rick says, "(Jack) is healthy as an ox at a young 83." An article about Jack, written by Vermont Times Argus staffer S. Patrick Mahar, appeared in November 1996.
October 2000 - Painting Depicts Life Won by a KO, by Herald American Columnist Dick Case
"This is my life," Greg Sorrentino says, pointing to the mural of pulsing colors that loops around the wall at the top of the stairs at his Water Street gym. The painting also is about how Greg reinvented himself, on the same downtown street near City Hall where it all started. We're looking at Carmen Basilio fighting Sugar Ray Robinson in Yankee Studium, Muhammad Ali when he floated like a butterfly and stung like a bee, Ali has George Foremen on the floor. Time was, Greg danced around that ring, floating and stinging, working on becoming a world-class boxer. he was in his 20s. How he's 43 and full of the wisdom that boxing is a young man's game. "It's not something you can be for 20 years," Greg said, "It's all about getting hurt." If a guy misses his chance to squeeze through that very narrow doorway to championships and big bucks, he needs to be smart enough to move on, before the bells won't stop ringing in his head. Greg moved on, after 33 professional and 19 amateur fights, between 1975 and 1984. He was New York State heavyweight champ as a pro, and Golden Gloves ring-king as an amateur. Greg turned into a boxer who trains people by using the boxer's regime. Three years ago, he opened a gym at 333 E. Water Street, down the block from an earlier Water Street gym where he learned about boxing from one of the legends on the wall, Carmen Basilio. Carmen, well out of the game at 73 and a businessman, is the greatest boxer to rise from Syracuse. He had the welterweight world title in the 1950s. To Greg, the old champ's a god: "As far as I'm concerned, his picture should be next to the definition of boxing in the dictionary. He trained himself so hard. He fought in obscurity 38 times as a pro before he got a main event." Carmen helped Greg into his first pair of boxing gloves more than 25 years ago, after the young man moved to the Syracuse area from New York City. "I'd never boxed before I met Carmen; he was teaching at Le Moyne," Greg recalls. "I was a football player." The idea of using boxing to get in shape intrigued Greg. He had a scholarship to play prep school football. So why not try a few conditioning rounds in the ring? The former champion tested his intentions by telling him how tough it would be. "I pleaded with him to try me for a month," Greg continued. "It was an incredible regime and I came back. After three months, I was sparring in the gum. The first time I ended up with two black eyes. I was intrigued by the legend of boxing; I wanted to learn it." I met Greg when he was 22 and dancing at Ring 56, a gym on Herald Place where the Herald-Journal women's department used to be when I hired on to the newspaper. Back in 1978, Syracuse trainer Johnny DeJohn said Greg had potential. "I can tell," Johnny said then. "You learn, and learn and when the time comes, he's going to step around the big ones. This kid's clever." Greg said the top was where he wanted to be. He'd been to Ali's training camp in Pennsylvania before he moved to Syracuse and, wow, the future champ was so nice to this kid from the Bronx. It was an incredible experience for him, Greg says today. Life-shaping, in fact. Still, when the time came for him to retire as a boxer, Greg, the clever kid, knew it was time. He went to Florida and worked at Angelo Dundee's gym, helping train boxers while he earned money as a security guard. He spent two years in Alaska. He trained more fighters in California, "seeing it all." Yeah, Greg comments, "boxing's a dirty sport," and not neecessarily all of that is inside the ropes. Greedy promoters, crooked judges...well, there are better ways to make a living. Greg came back to Syracuse in 1987 with the idea of using his experience "to get people in shape." He married Melinda, and they have three children. At first, he had a fitness van he'd take to clients' homes and offices. Then he had a small shop in rented space, then Water Street. He look around the big gym on the second floor of what used to be a television store. The windows open the room to downtown. Recorded music pounds, a stationary bag clicks..."I dreamed about this place for 20 years," Greg says. "Look at it." Besides training what he calls "white-collar boxers" and helping "keep yuppies in shape," Greg has a fist in what's left of the local boxing scene, which he describes with lots of charity as "inactive" without a strong amateur program. He volunteers at the Boxing Hall of Fame in Canastota and does color commentary on the radio for bouts at the Turning Stone Casino in Verona, about the only place we have to see a live boxing card hereabouts. Deb McDowell, who painted Greg's mural for him, is one of his white-collar boxers. The artist with a studio in Fabius has been working out in his gyms five years. That includes a few rounds in the ring with the boss, who "keeps me pumping." Deb calls Greg "a very fine partner. The nicest thing about him is that he doesn't hit you back."
Syracuse Herald American, October 15, 2000, Section B, p. 1 and 7.
August 2000 - A Reporter At Large - Teddy Atlas and the Art of Bruising.
Most cornermen have no more to offer a fighter than a bucket to spit in. As they work over their charge - icing his welts, slaking his thirst - they frantically offer up whatever cliches come to mind.
See full story by Remnick, David. "Cornerman." The New Yorker (August 21 & 28, 2000): 144-153.
June 19, 1960 - New York Mirror Magazine, Ingemar Johansson, p. 12.
June 23, 1999, Jamaica, Vermont. George E. Dupont, Sr., born in South Hadley, Massachusetts on October 25, 1911. A many-talented person, George [Jackie Dupont] was a professional boxer during the 1920s and 1930s, fighting out of the Valley Arena in Holyoke, Massachusetts. He had over 100 professional fights in Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, and Canada.
Burlington Free Press, June 26, 1999, p. 2B
December 9, 1998, San Diego, California. Archie Moore, who knocked out more opponents than anyone else in the history of boxing, died Wednesday at 84. He held the light heavyweight title for 11 of the 27 years he was in the ring, knocking out 141 opponents in 228 bouts. Moore, whose real name was Archibald Lee Wright, was born in Benoit, Mississippi, on December 13, 1913. He won the light heavyweight title in 1952 at age 39 with a victory over Joey Maxim. He successfully defended his title nine more times, and along the way fought heavyweight champions Rocky Marciano, Floyd Patterson and Muhammad Ali.
Burlington Free Press, December 10, 1998, p. 10B
December 6, 1998, Erie, Pennsylvania. Johnny Bizzarro, one of the greatest lightweight contenders of the world, died at the age of 60. Born in Marcianese, Italy, October 19, 1938, he began his career in 1958 and compiled a record of 54-11-2. He fought twice for the championship title. In 1963 he lost a 15-round decision to Gabriel "Flash" Elorde, and in 1966 against Carlos Ortiz, who kayoed Bizzarro in the 12th. Bizzarro was inducted into the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame in 1987.
June 14, 1998, Burlington, Vermont. Ronnie J. Gordon, born in Holyoke, Massachusetts, January 17, 1960. Fought in the Golden Gloves.
Burlington Free Press, June 16, 1998, p. 2B
May 17, 1998, Burlington, Vermont. Harvey W. "Trapper" Alapa, born in Burlington February 28, 1911. In 1934 Harvey turned professional boxer and had won his first 18 fights throughout Vermont, New Hampshire, New York State and once in the Montreal Forum. In 1935 he went out to Akron, Ohio where he had 34 more professional fights in which he won 23 with three draws and eight losses. Harvey's proudest moments in the ring were when Jack Dempsey refereed two of his fights.
Burlington Free Press, May 19, 1998, p. 2B
The passing away of Charles "Tim" Leone, President of Turquoise Film/Video Production, Inc., on July 16, 1997. IBRO was initially, and ably guided by Tim after it's founding in 1980. Considered an excellent researcher, he put out the IBRO newsletter for many years.
Tony Zale (Anthony Florian Zaleski) world middleweight champion from 1940-48, died March 20, 1997, at the age of 83, in Portage, Indiana. Known as the "Man of Steel" for his endurance in the face of physical punishment, he quit his job at Gary's steel mills when his boxing career took off in the 1930s. He battled boxing legend Rocky Graziano three times during the 1940s, but was eventually dethroned by French boxer Marcel Cerdan, and at 35, decided to call it quits.
Johnston, Alexander. Ten And Out! The Complete Story of the Prize Ring in America. New York: Ives Washburn, 1927.
Lewis, Charlton T., ed. Harper's Book of Facts. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1906.
Longford, Elizabeth. Wellington: The Years of the Sword. New York: Harper & Row Publishers, 1969.
Niles, Hezekia, Nile's Weekly Register. Baltimore, Maryland, 1811-1849.
Ripley, George and Charles A Dana, eds. The American Cyclopaedia, Vol. XIV. New York: D. Appleton & Company, 1875.
Toulmin, Vanessa. A Fair Fight. Oldham, England: World's Fair Publications, 1999.
Vermont Golden Gloves
Kevin Smith is researching black fighters between 1915-1933. He's gathering stats and references for a book entitled "The Carmel Colored Kings." He can be reached at: Kevin_Smith@bluenet.com
Mike McSorley is alive and well in Pittsburgh, and continues to train. He's looking to purchase some Vermont Golden Glove shirts and sweats. He also comments about several Golden Glovers who have turn pro and apparently doing very well. Both Kevin and Mike went to St. Micheal's College in Winooski (Colchester) Vermont. His address is email@example.com