New Jersey Boxing 2007 Hall of Fame Inductees.....just announced!

26.03.07 - By Mike Indri - Retired Boxers Foundation - Henry Hascup, president of the New Jersey Boxing Hall of Fame, beamed with pride as he announced the thirteen newest members of the highly esteemed organization, selected by the Hall's electoral committee this past week. Hascup, a noted boxing historian, has served as the NJBHOF president for over twenty years. "I've been involved with the Hall of Fame since 1981, and this is one of the better votes I've ever seen! All the boxers earned it, as well as those that provide such a great service to our sport."

This year's group is comprised of eight former boxers, as well five non-participants: two judges, one promoter, one trainer and a timekeeper.

"They hit a homerun this year with the inductions," noted New Jersey State Athletic Control Board Commissioner, Larry Hazzard, Sr.

Headlining the class of 2007 are former world champions Charles Murray and Alfred Cole, both members of the 1988 Olympic team and two thirds of the legendary "Triple Threat", who fought together on numerous fightcards.

*Third member, Ray Mercer, a 1988 Olympic gold medallist and heavyweight boxing contender, is still an active fighter. Murray, born in South Orange, finished with a 44-9 (26 KO's) professional record and captured the International Boxing Federation's lightweight title with a unanimous twelve round decision win over Rodney Moore in Atlantic City in 1993. During his career "The Natural" defeated former champions Juan LaPorte, Livingstone Bramble and Micky Ward.

Cole picked up his world championship belt a little quicker, defeating James Warring by unanimous decision in 1992, for the IBF Cruiserweight title.

Cole aptly defended his crown five times before relinquishing the title, after beating Uriah Grant in Atlantic City (UD 12, 06/24/95), to move up and battle in the heavyweight division. Cole was one of the most dominating of all cruiserweight fighters, leaving the division with a 27-1 record. His lone defeat, to Leon Taylor (SD 10, 12/13/90), was avenged the following year.

Taking on all comers and pitted against the top ranked fighters, "Ice" Cole valiantly traded punches with the likes of Tim Witherspoon, Michael Grant, Kirk Johnson, Corrie Sanders, Terrence Lewis, Jameel McCline, Hasim Rahman and Sultan Ibragimov, leaving the squared circle with a highly respected career record of 34-14-3.

Also being honored is Guy Casale, a very popular heavyweight during the late 70's. His third round knockout of the notorious Bobby Halpern in Madison Square Garden (05/15/78) made for legend. Always a fighting fixture at the Totowa Ice World, where the Lou Duva family and Main Events would be launched, Casale challenged fellow NJ Hall of Famer Scott Frank for the state heavyweight title, coming up on the short end of a ninth round knockout - in a bout refereed by Larry Hazzard. The likable Casale hung up the gloves in 1981, following a loss to Marvis Frazier in Las Vegas, winding up with a solid 14-3-3 (7 KO's) record.

Two-time New York Golden Glove boxing Champion Carl "The Truth" Williams, 30-10 (21KO's), took heavyweight king Larry Holmes fifteen rounds in 1985 and gave the champion all he could. Although losing the unanimous decision, Williams had made his mark as a premier level fighter. Four years later (07/21/89) Williams would again challenge for the heavyweight crown, getting stopped in the first round by Mike Tyson. During his sixteen year career Williams defeated contenders James Tillis, Ossie Ocasio, Jesse Ferguson and one-time champion Trevor Berbick. Willams also had Tommy Morrison down twice in round five of their 1993 battle, but Morrison was able to turn the tide and stopped "The Truth" in the eighth.

Amongst the other boxers selected for induction, Hilliard (Junior) Edmonds, 18-7-1 (11KO's) from East Orange, NJ began his career in 1977. Edmonds fought as a light heavyweight from 1977-1988 has wins over Ramon Ranquello and Jeff McCraken. Edmonds also lost a unanimous decision to champion Virgil Hill.

Middleweight Kevin Moley was trained by the legendary Lou Duva and was a regular on the NJ club-boxing scene in the early 80's. A fan favorite at the no-longer-standing Embassy Hall in North Bergen and the Casinos in Atlantic City, Moley running his record to 22-0 (19 KO's) and earned a Madison Square Garden co-feature bout against former boxing champion Wilfred Benitez in 1985. The boxing hero of Puerto Rico defeated Moley, who didn't go down easy, by unanimous decision over ten rounds. Moley would retire in 1993 with an enviable pro record of 28-5, including 24 knockouts.

Plainfield, NJ resident Albert (Steel) Mills won the 1977 NJ Golden Gloves and compiled a 14-2 (10 KO's) record professionally. While an accomplished boxer, Mills is being honored, rightfully so, just as much for his work outside the boxing ring. A devoted coach and mentor to the youth of Plainfield, Mills runs a summer camp, which employs young adults and supervises children. Boxing needs more "Champions" like Albert Mills!

Being honored posthumously is former Clifton, NJ lightweight Johnny Rohrig. The feisty Rohrig fought a total of seventy-five fights from 1936-1945, amassing 42 wins, against 25 losses and 8 draws. Rohrig defeated Lenny Mancini (father of former boxing champion Ray "Boom-Boom" Mancini) by points in 1940.

The great Tippy Larkin called Rohrig his "toughest opponent", after Larkin took a ten rounder by points (06/25/40).

Also being honored with induction, for their contributions outside the ropes, are long time Judges Frank Burnette and Melvina Lathan, female Promoter Diane Lee Fischer, admired Trainer John Davenport and revered Timekeeper Roosevelt Gilbert.
*Davenport and Gilbert are being honored posthumously.

This year's annual New Jersey Boxing Hall of Fame Induction Dinner will be held November 8th (Weds.) at the Venetian in Garfield, NJ.

For tickets or information contact NJ Boxing Hall of Fame President,
Henry Hascup: (973) 471-2458 or

Mike Indri
Retired Boxers Foundation

Article posted on 27.03.2007

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