|Me (Randy De La O, Tony "The Tiger" Lopez and Richard "Mr. KO" Savalas at the Sportsmen's Lodge in Studio City|
The 2012 California Boxing Hall of Fame Banquet
The Sportsmen's Lodge
Studio City, California
October 20, 2012
I'm a little late in getting this out and I didn't want to let any more time go by without telling you about the 2012 California Boxing Hall of Fame Induction Banquet at the famed Sportsmen's Lodge in Studio City, California. It was a record attendance with the best of West Coast Boxing in attending, as well as some guests from the East Coast and more.
Tony “The Tiger” Lopez was on hand to receive his induction and his pal, Richard “Mr. KO” Savalas was on hand to share the moment with him. I had a chance to talk with both of them and it was an honor to spend time with them.
My friend Charley Norkus Jr. and his family came in from Long Island, New York to accept the honors for his late father, Charlie Norkus Sr., an exciting and tough top contender in the 40's and 50's. Rick Farris, Vice president of the California Boxing Hall of Fame brought it to the attention of the crowd that Charlie Jr. was one of the first responders on 9/11 when the Twin Towers were attacked and destroyed by terrorists. Many from his station died as a result of that attack. Charlie is an honest to goodness American hero and he received a well deserved standing ovation.
One of the highlights of the day was watching legendary female fighter, Lucia Rijker, receive her induction. A great fighter and a great person. She's still slugging away, training women fighters and doing her part to improve women's boxing.
|Ed Hernandez Jr, and Lucia Rijker|
Current middleweight champ Sergio Martinez was schedule to receive his induction but was unable to attend due to an injury and upcoming knee surgery. I was a little disappointed but that's just the way it goes sometimes!
On hand to show their support for the California Boxing Hall of Fame were Danny “Little Red” Lopez, Bobby Chacon, Mando Muniz, Carlos Palomino, Lamont Brewster, Rudy Orozco,Jesse Reid Sr and Jesse Reid Jr, Art Frias, referee Pat Russell, Ray Maynez, boxing artist Roger Esty and his wife Maria, boxing writer Dan Hanley Jr., referee Gwen Adair, actors Rance Howard and Clint Howard and so many more.
The Inductees for the 2012 California Boxing Hall of Fame are as follows:
Tony “The Tiger” Lopez
Norman “Bumpy” Parra
Randy De La O
Posthumous Inductees include:
|My wife Jeri and I at the Sportsmen's Lodge|
With me on this day were my wife Jeri and our children; daughter Meranda and our granddaughters Mariah and Maddie, along with their father Robert Guardian, our son Andrew, who flew in from Seattle, Washington to spend the week with us, and our youngest daughter Savannah and her husband Josh Guerrero. My brother Dennis, his wife Teri and their daughter Samantha were also there. I appreciate all who came out to support me, including my cousins David Robles Sr & Jr., David Delgado and my friends Ed Hernandez Sr, & Jr. and all the rest who chose to spend the day with us.
|My Family: daughter Meranda, daughter Savannah, Me granddaughter Mariah, Son Andrew, and in front, granddaughter Maddie|
I'm not much for speaking in front of a crowd but I did what I had to do. I dedicated the day for my family and I to my late grandson Nathan Joseph Guardian.
The best part of the day was seeing old friends and meeting new ones. You will never convince me that the boxing crowd isn't the best in all of sports!
It was an overwhelming day for me and an honor that I won't forget. My thanks to the California Boxing Hall of Fame, Rick Farris (Who worked his heart out for this one), Frank Baltazar Sr and Don Fraser and the 2012 Selection committee. Thank you for giving my family and I a day to remember!
Congratulations to all the inductees, including CBHOF Presidwnt, who was presented an "Outstanding Lifetime Achievement" award by Gwen Adair and Steve Harpst in the form of a prizefighter statue made by Steve. It was a well deserved honor.
|Carlos Palomino, Dan Hanley, Mando Muniz and Rick Farris|
at the Sportsmen's Lodge