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Philadelphia to Celebrate the 50th Anniversary of Sonny Liston’s Heavyweight Title

“No athlete was ever vilified more viciously and unfairly than Sonny Liston. Among other things, Liston was called an inferior Negro, less than human, slow-thinking, a primitive in a primitive profession, a latter-day caveman, a savage, glaring eyed gorilla, a rogue elephant, a congenital thug, a cop hater and stronger than a yoke of oxen and just as dumb.”

So writes Paul Gallender in his new biography, Sonny Liston – The Real Story Behind the Ali-Liston Fights. The author will honor Sonny with a 50th Anniversary Celebration of his winning the World Heavyweight Boxing Championship from Floyd Patterson on Monday, September 24th from 5:00-8:00 p.m. at the African American Museum of Philadelphia, located at 701 Arch St. Liston and his wife Geraldine lived in Philadelphia from 1958-1962.

Joining Paul will be Sonny’s son, Bill Wingate, the son of Liston’s trainer, Willie Reddish Jr., Hall of Fame Boxing Promoter, J. Russell Peltz, Sonny’s close friends Tommy Manning and Mitchell Allen, and George Headley Hanson Jr., editor of the acclaimed online boxing publication, The Mouthpiece.

Gallender will introduce you to a man you would have been proud to know – a man whose integrity, sense of fairness and depth of character was acknowledged for the most part only by his family, friends and children of every race. Attendees will be asked to adopt a resolution honoring Sonny Liston for his considerable accomplishments inside of the ring, and his many good deeds outside of it.

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