Monday, May 28, 2012

Raul Rojas: How We All Forget..... By Rick Farris


Raul Rojas


How we all forget . . .

By Rick Farris

The notice of Johnny Tapia's passing has generated a lot of talk, memories. A great fighter, a unique story, one that was shared world wide via TV as was Tapia's career.

A few days ago, another world champ passed away. Like Tapia, he was a small fighter with a big fight inside him. A tough guy, a world champion. Like Tapia, he shared his career with drug and alochol abuse.

Of course, Johnny Tapia fought on network TV and cable TV, he was seen world wide, became a household name in the boxing community. Raul had the same impact on his fans, but they were those of us who watched him fight live, or on local TV in L.A. In Los Angeles, Rojas could sell out the Olympic. In New York, they didn't know who he was.

Johnny's death made the L.A. Times this morning, but Raul Rojas' has not, and Rojas died last week. Raul was a world champ, an L.A. guy who was a headliner during one of the city's greatest eras in boxing. He retired into a job as a Longshoreman, he worked the LA Harbor with other local boxing legends.

Rojas died days ago, and Don Fraser and I have both contacted the L.A. Times with news and info regarding the death of Raul Rojas, but have yet to acknowledge it in their paper. As Don and I know, most of the sports writer weren't alive 43 years ago when Raul won the world featherweight title. Because of this he was overlooked every year by the World Boxing Hall of Fame. I posted a Facebook message regarding Raul's funeral arraingments, for those who might like to pay their final respects to a world champion. There was no response to this either.

Raul's name might not make the L.A. Times Obituary column, but back in the day when he was King of the 126 pounders in boxing, it was mentioned often in their sports page. I don't know about anybody else who remembers Raul from his days as champ, but this friday, at 10am, I'll be at All Souls Mortuary in Long Beach, and paying my respects to a fallen champion.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

When I was a kid growing up in the sixties our family were big Boxing Fans. My brother Frank Lopez was a Boxer in the late sixties & went on to the Marines to win the all Military title in his division. Raul Rojas was well known at our household. I am now a Longshorewomen & have total Respect for this Man & what he accomplished. There are people at work who knew him well. HE WILL NOT BE FORGOTTEN by those who were Boxing Fans during his era. My condolences to his family.

Anonymous said...

This article caught my eye this morning. I have been looking for a kindergarten friend from Watts by the name of Maria. All I remember being told about her is that she married a boxing champ. If anyone knows if this could be the person she married, please post it here.I would like to know what happened to her.

Anonymous said...

Yes My aunt married my uncle Raul. Perhaps u will also know my dad Pano ? Or my uncle Marcelo? Anyhow, leave a contact number and your name and I will be more then happy to pass it on to her.