THE PARADE OF CHAMPIONS (1969 to 1989): by Brian Zelley
Scotty Olson, Dick Findlay, Walter Henry
Eddie Haddad, Fred Desrosiers and Donato Paduano
Over the last 40 plus years, the Canadian Amateur Boxing Association
has produced many national champions with the primary focus on the
senior open champions with a wide variety of backgrounds in the sport.
1969: The New Beginning:
*The 1969 Canadian Nationals would see the return of Ontario
boxer Walter Henry back in the circle of champions. There would
also be British Columbia's Neil Austin and Pat O'Reilly jr. Then
there was the two Summerhayes brothers who would win the
Canadian titles before starting a professional boxing journey.
It is fair to say Walter Henry is one of Canada's
great amateur boxers that was a team member
of the 1964 and 1968 Olympic boxing teams.
In 1964, one of his team members was a boxer
from the Royal Canadian Navy that fought
from Vancouver Island at the Esquimalt base
by the name of Fred Desrosiers.
In 1968, Walter's team mates included
Vancouver's two timeBC Golden Boy Dick Findlay
and Quebec's Donato Paduano.
1970: The Year of the BRITISH COLUMBIA boxer:
*For British Columbia boxers, the year 1970 would be a year
like no other starting with the Golden Gloves, the British
Columbia Amateur Boxing Association would host
the tournament and follow that up with the
1970 Canadian Championships and an International tournament
and some of the stars of the Sixties such as Frank Scott and Freddy
Fuller would be in the thick of it along with heavyweight Jack Medal.
Also returning as champion from BC was Neil Austin. The other
BC boxers were Joe Cooke and Darryl Olsen. Beyond BC. we
had RAYMOND DOIRON.
most active and popular boxers that
fought in the Pacific Northwest in
the Sixties and would bring his
experience and leadership to the
1970 Canadian boxing team.
Freddy is a recipient of many
awards from his early days
in boxing under the gudance
of Harry Twist of the
South Burnaby boxing club
in the late Fifties and his time at other clubs including
the East Vancouver Optimists Boxing Club, the
North West Eagles and the Firefighters clubs.
One of his major awards was 1965 Golden Boy.
experienced boxers and a
former Canadian champion
and a Commonwealth Games
medal winner in 1966.
Like Freddy he began early
under the guidance of folks
like Harry Twist. For the
1967/1968 season he would
be part of the Vancouver
Firefighters boxing club
under the direction of experienced coaches
Bert Lowes and Pat West. Later, Frankie would
begin his own boxing club called the Queensborough
Boxing Club in New Westminster.
1971: The Return of the Champions and New Faces:
*Two of the returning champions would be Jack Meda
and Marvin Arneson. But, there would be other new
names of the 1971 list of champions including two
boxers from British Columbia named
Chris Ius and Les Hamilton. Some of the others were:
Jose Martinez, Bernard Guindon and William Titley.
boxing story that begins in 1967 when he
made his first appearance in the BC
Golden Gloves and faced one Wes Craven
of Seattle. In other early action he faced
former Canadian champion Earle McLeay.
Despite early setbacks, Jack would have
the dedication, desire and drive to be the
best in British Columbia under the eye
of former multi-term champion
Harold Mann in Prince George for the
Spruce Capital Warriors boxing club/
His major performance was his victory in 1970 and would
repeat that performance in 1971. Years would pass away
and Jack would join Harold Mann in the Prince George
Sports Hall of Fame and be part of a permanent legacy
for Prince George, British Columbia and Canada.
**1971 Pan Am Games action and medals""
For Boxing Canada, two boxers would win bronze.
In the light-middleweight division, boxer Bernard Guindon
along with USA's Reggie Jones would earn bronze, and
in the light-heavyweight division William Titley won bronze.
1972: Chasing the Olympic Dream:
Some of the returning champions would be Ius, Hamilton, and
Guindon, and some of the new faces would be heavyweight
Carroll Morgan and light-flyweight Ian Clyde.
boxing official and former coach
of the South Hill and Firefighters
Boxing club, Bert Lowes.)
With the arrival of Ian Clyde, he
would replace Walter Henry as one
of the best active Canadian amateur boxers. Over the remaining
part of the Seventies he would rule the flyweight division, and
be part of that 1980 Olympic team that did not get to go due to
International politics, and Ian accepted the news with dignity;
After his time in the amateurs, on May 24m 1980, the Ottawa
"Beaver Boxing Club" coached by Olympian Joe Sandulo
had a special message for Ian at their boxing "Card of Champions".
**The 1972 Canadian Olympic Boxing Team**
of five Canadian boxers to be on the
1972 Olympic team. The others were
Chris Ius, Les Hamilton, Dale Anderson
and Jose Martinez. Each boxer brought
a variety of experiences to the sport.
Ius and Hamilton are two boxers that
had years of experience starting with
junior competition in the Greater
Vancouver region. Jose Martinez had lost to Frank Scott in 1970,
but had bounced back to be an active boxer since 1970 to earn his
place on the team. For Carroll Morgn from Nova Scotia, this was
his first term as the Canadian senior champion, but he still earned
a spot on the '72 team.
1973: A New Round With New Faces
and Ian Clyde would begin a new round
*The team of 1973 would have some new faces such as
Nanaimo boxer Jack Snaith who returned a Canadian
title to Vancouver Island. Jack had started in Vancouver
at the Firefighters boxing club, but after the formation of the
Nanaimo Boxing Club by Dan Wright and Brian Zelley in '71
Snaith would be the first star of the club when he joined.
*Canadian Archives photo)
and Dennis Belair.
Returning to the championship post were
Clyde, Ius, Anderson, Arneson and Morgan.
As of 1973 Marv Arneson was the veteran of
Boxing Canada's boxers who had fought his way
through many tournaments in the Sixties and
the early seventies. For is overall achievements,
Arneson must rate has one of the top boxers
of Canadian amateur boxing history.
1974: An Eye Towards The Commonwealth Games
*One of the International tournaments that takes place every four years
is the Commonwealth Games aka British Empire Games but before any
selection, the Canadian boxers must engage in the Senior Nationals
sanctioned by BOXING CANADA aka Canadian Amateur Boxing
in the 1974 Commonwealth Games, the bronze medal winner
was boxer Dale Anderson. Others to compete were:
Michael Briere, Carmen Rinke, Tim Taylor and Carroll Morgan.
1975 to 1979: A Variety of talent, tournaments and treasure chests
*For the last five years of the Seventies, Canadian boxing would
start on a winning path in 1975 with Canadian champion
Chris Clarke and his gold medal performance in
the 1975 Pan American (Pan Am) Games.
Spruce Capital Warrior
1976 Olympic Boxer
Summer Olympics in Montreal that gave
many of our champions of '76
a chance to compete including veteran
Ian Clyde. From British Columbia there
would be Chris Ius who had competed in
the 1972 Olympics and then there was
Sid McKnight from Prince George.
Sid would box from the outstanding club
from Prince George named the
Spruce Capital Warriors Boxing Club.
Following his years of boxing, Sid would
be inducted into the Prince George Sports Hall of Fame to join others
such as Harold Mann and Jack Meda. In recent years, current
boxing coach of the Spruce Capital club, Wayne Sponagle was inducted.
1977: Rinke, Caplette and Boutin
Carmen Rinke, Wayne Caplette and Guy Boutin were
just three of the boxers that would join veteran Ian Clyde
and others such as Roger Fortin, Bill Ranelli and John Rafferty/
1978: Commonwealth Games Action in Edmonton, Alberta
*The boxers for Team Canada did very well at the Games.
The team included:
Ian Clyde, Bill Ranelli, Guy Boutin, Frank Nolan jr. John Rafferty,
Derrick Hoyt, Kelly Perlette, Roddy MacDonald and Roger Fortin.
1979: CANADIANS win medals at PAN AM GAMES
*Ian Clyde and Patrick Fennell won bronze in San Juan.
Toronto boxer Patrick Fennell fought in the light-heavy division.
Due in part to the boycott of the 1980 Olympics, the medal
winners of 1980 were unable to compete in Moscow. As a result,
Patrick is one of the lesser known medal winning champs
that has fought in International competition.
1980 - 1984: The Long Winding Road To Olympic Glory
*It began in 1980 with Canadian boxers being left at the starting gate
due to International politics and the Soviets invasion of Afghanistan.
But, tragedy would strike like thunder with the death of many members
of the USA boxing team killed when their plane crashed and exploded
at a Polish airport. The team included one Chuck Robinson
from Washington state who travelled to Nanaimo to participate
and win a championship in the first of many
"Bathtub Capital Golden Gloves Tournaments".
So begins the Canadian boxing story of the Eighties,
after we stepped out of the dark days of 1980, it was time to shine
in clubs, regions, provinces and under the national and international
==Time to say Goodbye, but Hello to a New Beginning==
It was time to say goodbye to the long amateur boxing journey
of IAN CLYDE and put closure to the lost chances at the
Moscow Olympics. Ian put closure to the setback by his
public letter that had dignity and class, and there was a
formal goodbye at Ottawa's Beaver Boxing Club. But,
there was also much hope for the future through the
performance of our junior and youth boxers. In 1980,
this stage was set by a boxer named Dar. It was junior
boxer Asif Dar that earned top marks at the '80 juniors
that gave us hope for the future. And, it was the
beginning of new growth in places like Vancouver Island
with new vision from the likes of Island Commissioner
Rick Brough and the many coaches and officials. It
was the revival of such tournaments as the BC
Diamond Belt Championships that last took place in
1967 and 1968 that would give us hope for provincial
boxing in the Eighties. So, despite the Olympic setback
there were signs of things to come that would lead to
success on a grand scale from junior and youth tournaments,
to senior national activity. But, even the good times would
have setbacks for some that travelled down the boxing
highway in the Eighties.
MANY ROADS THROUGHOUT THE EIGHTIES
By the time the eighties played the hands dealt to the boxers,
officials and coaches a few names would stand out due to the
Olympic performances in 1984 and 1985, in British Columbia
there were also many junior and youth boxers that we add a
few pages of glory to the history of Canadian boxing and
become the home town star. In British Columbia three of those
boxers would include ALAN BROWN, MANNY SOBRAL and
TONY DUFFY. Of the three, Sobral would earn a spot on the
1988 Olympic team along with others such as LENNOX LEWIS.
But before the glory of 1988 and 1984, the building process was
taking place in 1981 to 1983 in various clubs and tournaments.
In some areas the process started long before 1981, but was a
continuation or revival from previous decades such as the
interesting stories from Vancouver Island from Campbell River
to the capital city Victoria, BC.
at Bob Decker's Shamrock Boxing club mid-eighties
Some of the builders of boxing in the Eightes;
*There are many names of coaches and officials and
boards of directors to consider that helped make the
Eighties an important decade for success. Often in
telling their own story, boxers of note become narrow
in the focus of who was there to make it possible. They
often focus on one or two coaches and restrict reverences
to some of their club mates or team mates. But, the real
story is much broader and deeper as to who helped whom
to reach the top of the ladder.
1981: THE YEAR OF THE RANELLI SWEEP:
Looking back to the 1981 senior nationals brought some
interesting results including the sweep in the three lighter
division of Danny, Rick and Bill Ranelli, but there were other
fine young boxers such as Stephen and Frank Nolan, John Kahlbenn,
Rick Anderson and Shawn O'Sullivan.
would be engaged in competition with
Germany along with chmpions
Willie DeWittand Danny Lindstrom.
Stephen Nolan would be one of the
Nolan clan from Sault Ste. Marie that
would shine during the eighties. In 1980.
Stephen was one of the Canadian boxers
that was selected to be on the Canadian
Olympic boxing team. But, their hopes and
desires were dashed when
Canada did not compete in the 1980 Moscow summer olympics. But,
beyond the setback of 1980, Stephen would continue to demonstrate
an outstanding performance in Canada and International events.
But, in 1984, he would suffer another Olympic setback when he was
eliminated by Steve Pagendam at the second senior box-off event
which took place in May 1984 in Burnaby and hosted by the
British Columbia Amateur Boxing Association.
Looking back over the boxing journey of Nolan, it ewas
an interesting ride with assorted achievements along the
way. One of his awards in the mid-Seventies was the
"H. P. Broughton Trophy" as Sault Ste. Marie sports person
of the year.
(aka Danny Stonewalker)
Alberta's own Danny Lindstrom was a multi-term champion
in the eighties, and is recognized in the
"Wood Buffalo Sports Hall of Fame" along with other
boxers including Edgar Davis Jr. and Wayne Bourque.
1982:Gold at the Commonwealh games
*It would be another step towards the '84 Olympics for
boxers Shawn O'Sullivan and Willie deWitt who both
won gold at the '82 Games. Also, winning a bronze
was middleweight KEVIN MCDERMOTT.
1984: OLYMPIC GLORY: DeWitt, O'Sullivan and Walters:
1985: Out with the old and in with the New Faces:
*One of the big surprises for BC and maybe other regions was the
arrival of boxer JOE PENDRY in the welterweight division.
The division included two of the '84 Olympic boxers
Wayne Gordon and Dennis Lambert. But, after the final
bell of the last welterweight bout, it was Pendry that had
his hand raised as a new Canadian champion. In the
featherweight division Steve Pagendam did not compete
but there was another Pagendam in the story when
Jamie Pagendam edged Michel Moffa in the finals.
At the end of the final competition the boxer earning the
best boxer award was ASIF DAR. In the light-heavyweight
division, boxer Egerton Marcus would become the new champ.
Another interesting case was that of Alberta's SCOTTY OLSON.
In 1984, Scotty "bulldog" Olson was a junior champion, but
for 1985 a strategic decision was made for Scotty to jump from
junior to senior and it proved a good decision. Two of the boxer
that he defeated in the light-flyweight division were BC's
Augustos dos Reis and Quebec's Steve D'Sousa. In flyweight
action Ontario's Steve Beaupre edged Saskatchewan's Jeff Hill.
1986: Another round of Commonwealth action
*The Canadians hit the mother lode of metal at the Games
in Scotland with Gold and Bronze. Gold medalists were
Scotty Olson, Bill Downey, Asif Dar, Howard Grant,
Dan Sherry and Lennox Lewis. Bronze was earned by
Steve Beaupre, John Shaw, Brent Kolosofski and Domenic d'Amico.
1987: Pan Am Games and other action
*It would be a silver medal for Otis Grant in the middleweight
division and silver for Lennox Lewis in the super heavyweight
division, and bronze for Domenico d'Amico in heavyweight action.
1988: More Olympic Glory and Gold for Lennox Lewis:
1989: The end of a decade and the window
into the Nineties:
*Some of the boxers that would lead the way
into the Nineties won titles in 1989 such as:
Bill Irwin and Marc Leduc.
Some of the other champions were
Wes Sunshine, Greg Johson and
Names from the Eighties 1985 to 1989
Some of the names from the Eighties:
Augustos dos Reis, Scotty Olson, Leonard Petrei, Charles Beaudry,
Terry Dermott, jeff Hill, Steve Beaupre, John Henry Wilson,
Rick Albrechtsen, Michel Moffa, Steve Pagendam, Jamie Pagendam,
Brian, Frank and Steven Nolan, Alex Bankier, Tim and Scott Cessford,
Asif Dar, Duncan Murdoch, Greg Gayle, Howard Grant, Dewith Fraser,
Otis Grant, Joe Martin, Joe Pendry, Lindon Linklater, Vernon Linklater,
Wayne Gordon, Darryl Flint, Danny Sherry, Wayne Welsh,
Egerton Marcus, Ken Johnson, Andrew Riley, Domenic D'Amico,
Wade Parsons, Brian Lansing, Lennox Lewis, Billy Irwin and
***GOLDEN MEMORIES 1969 to 1989***
*All boxers, coaches and officials that were involved at any
time during the time period 1969 to 1989 would have some
special memories of events and the many persons connectec
to the sport.
1. As I look back through the years from 1969 to 1989
there are many stories to tell, but some of the activities
* training at the Vancouver firefighters boxing club in 1969,
*being a co-founder of the Nanaimo boxing club in 1971,
*having my last formal fight in 1973,
*being part of the revival of boxing in Greater Victoria
starting in 1974,
*receiving a certificate from Boxing BC president Walter Boyce
*coaching at the London Boxing Club, Victoria Athletics and
the Victoria Jaycees boxing club between 1974 and 1985.
*Being part of the revival of amateur boxing on Vancouver
Island along with Howard Curling, Rick Brough, Bob Perry
and the various coaches between 1979 to 1985, and reviving
the Vancouver Island Amateur Boxing Championships in 1984,
*Serving as a board member and a ring official of the
British Columbia Amateur Boxing Association in the early Eighties
(September 1983 to January 1986).
*being one of three special awards judges at the 1984 Junior Nationals,
*serving on the 1994 Victoria Commonwealth Games boxing committee
between 1989 and January 1992 including one year as interim boxing
committee chairman and attending the 1990 Goodwill Games in Seattle.
- Brian W. Zelley, former boxer, coach and official of Boxing in BC
Ian Weir. Mike Caird
and Brian Zelley
*The revival of boxing
in Greater Victoria
Vic Murdoch, and
*at the 1984