Sad news in the boxing world as former world champion Emile Griffith passed away on Tuesday after a long battle with pugilistic dementia. He was 75-years-old.
Not only was Griffith praised for his accomplishments in the ring, but he unfortunately received plenty of judgement for the fight that took place in March of 1962 when he squared off against Bennie “The Kid” Paret. In a matchup that was on national television, Griffith knocked out Bennie in the 12th round of the fight–causing him to go into a coma before dying 10 days later from the injuries related to the fight.
Unfortunately for Griffith, he took quite the amount of heat for what happened in this fight against Paret, but despite the way this incident went down–it shouldn’t take away from what Griffith accomplished in his career as a boxer. There was a reason why he was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1990 and he certainly will be missed in the boxing world.
There were plenty of accomplishment’s to take away from Griffith’s Hall of Fame career, but nothing may stick out more than everything he had to overcome in his life. From becoming the first world champion from the U.S. Virgin Islands to the criticism he took for describing himself as straight, gay, and bisexual, the fact that Griffith dealt with all of this and still managed to have the type of career he had is nothing short of amazing and it’s a shame to see him go at the age of 75.