|When Irish Eyes Are Smiling
Roger Esty, Dan Hanley Jr, Frank Baltazar Sr, Dan "Pops" Hanley Sr and Rick Farris
By Roger Esty
"Let me help you getting that stuff in Rog,"said Dan Hanley.
We were in the the Marriot parking lot and I wanted to get my paintings inside the lobby for the WBHOF convention. I met Dan in the parking lot and he wanted to lend a hand.
"Thanks Danny. By the way,where's Pops?"
"Oh my dad's in the lobby looking at all the girls."
That was Dan. That was Pops. Always kiddin'. Always jokin'. Having fun was number one with them
We wheeled my paintings of the boxers inside and sure enough sitting by himself was Dan's dad,Pops Hanley.
"Hey young fella I laughed. What the hell is going on?"
"Did you kick my son in the balls for me?
Danny and I about fell on the floor.
"Hey Pops",Dan said ,You're getting to be a real prick."
Ol' Pops still sitting in the chair said,"Wait till I get up I'll take that smile off your face.
Just then walked in Rick Farris Vice President of the California Boxing Hall of Fame. Dan went over to talk with him.
You know Rog,"said Pops,"I have five pensions."
Pops grew up in Chi town like I did,but he was in the North Side where the Irish lived. Me,being a Dago I was from Taylor Street.He grew up tough in a tough town.
"Rog,you know my son has a right hand that hits like the sock of a mule."
"I bet he does Pops,"I said.
Dan broke away from Rick and went to his Dad.
"Yes Danny let's find something to eat."
Dan helped his father up and they started to walk to the dining room.
Rick came over.
"Rog,read any good books about boxing?"he asked.
"I always liked Hemingway's 'Fifty Grand."
"Me too",said Rick. "like when he describes Jack Brennan sitting in the locker room with his sweat shirt and old boxing shoes and his rough beard 'looking Irish and tough."
As I watched Dan put his arm around his father walking into the dining room,I said,"Yeah,I know what you mean."