View Full Version : Joe Louis Remembered 25 Years After His Death

04-12-2006, 06:08 PM
Louis remembered 25 years after death

Associated Press

ARLINGTON, Va. -- With the laying of a wreath and the sound of taps, Joe Louis was remembered at Arlington National Cemetery on Wednesday on the 25th anniversary of the boxing great's death.
Family and friends gathered at Louis' grave, beneath the long branches of a splendid oak tree not far from the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. "The Brown Bomber," the nickname etched on his tombstone, was remembered as a black sports hero who transcended the divisions of race in the segregated 1930s and 1940s.

"Joe Louis challenged the conscience of the country," Louis' son, Joe Louis Barrow Jr., told the gathering. "You couldn't have it both ways. You couldn't put Joe Louis on a pedestal and admire him as the heavyweight champion of the world and yet not allow him and his people to eat where they wanted to eat, live where they wanted to live, and be educated where they needed to be educated."

Louis was heavyweight champion from 1937 to 1949. His most memorable victory came on June 22, 1938, when he avenged a loss to Germany's Max Schmeling with a first-round knockout at Yankee Stadium, a blow to Adolf Hitler's campaign for Aryan supremacy.

Louis also served in the Army during World War II, achieving the rank of staff sergeant. He did not meet the requirements for burial at Arlington when he died at 66 in 1981, but President Reagan honored the request of Louis' widow and granted a waiver.

The cemetery's superintendent, John Metzler, said Louis' grave continues to attract many visitors. An image of Louis, wearing boxing shorts and gloves, is engraved on the stone.

Barrow said he has been working with filmmaker Spike Lee on a movie about his father. Such projects keep the Louis legacy alive.

"It's extraordinary to me that it doesn't seem to fade," Barrow said. "I'll be reading a paper somewhere, even in Europe, and the bottom line is there's a reference to Joe Louis. He died 25 years ago. He held the title from '37 to '49. He was essentially out of the limelight, and yet they still make reference to him. I don't know why the world doesn't want to let go of this man, and I'm thankful that it doesn't."

04-12-2006, 06:11 PM

Joe Louis

The Brown Bomber
Born: May 13, 1914, Lafayette, AL
Died: April 12, 1981, Las Vegas, NV
Pro Record: 69-3 (55 kayos)
Amateur Record: 50-4
1934 AAU Lightheavy Champ

4 Jul Jack Kracken Chicago, IL KO 1
12 Jul Willie Davis Chicago, IL KO 3
30 Jul Larry Udell Chicago, IL KO 2
13 Aug Jack Kranz Chicago, IL W 8
27 Aug Buck Everett Chicago, IL KO 2
11 Sep Alex Borchuk Detroit, MI KO 4
26 Sep Adolph Wiater Chicago, IL W 10
24 Oct Art Sykes Chicago, IL KO 8
31 Oct Jack O'Dowd Detroit, MI KO 2
14 Nov Stanley Poreda Chicago, IL KO 1
30 Nov Charley Massera Chicago, IL KO 3
14 Dec Lee Ramage Chicago, IL KO 8

4 Jan Patsy Perroni Detroit, MI W 10
11 Jan Hans Birkie Pittsburgh, PA KO 10
21 Feb Lee Ramage Los Angeles, CA KO 2
8 Mar Donald "Red" Barry San Francisco, CA KO 3
28 Mar Natie Brown Detroit, MI W 10
12 Apr Roy Lazer Chicago, IL KO 3
22 Apr Biff Bennett Dayton, OH KO 2
25 Apr Roscoe Toles Flint, MI KO 6
3 May Willie Davis Peoria, IL KO 2
7 May Gene Stanton Kalamazoo, MI KO 3
25 Jun Primo Carnera New York, NY KO 6
7 Aug King Levinsky Chicago, IL KO 1
24 Sep Max Baer New York, NY KO 4
Nov Opponent Montreal Exh 4
Nov Opponent Ottowa Exh 4
Nov Opponent Toronto Exh 4
Nov Opponent Quebec Exh 4
14 Dec Paolino Uzcudun New York, NY KO 4
29 Dec Isadoro Castagana Havana Sch-x

17 Jan Charley Retzlaff Chicago, IL KO 1
19 Jun Max Schmeling New York, NY KO by 12
18 Aug Jack Sharkey New York, NY KO3
22 Sep Al Ettore Philadelphia, PA KO 5
9 Oct Jorge Brescia New York, NY KO 3
14 Oct Willie Davis South Bend, IN Exh KO 3
14 Oct KO Brown South Bend, IN Exh KO 3
20 Nov Paul Williams New Orleans, LA Exh KO 2
20 Nov Tom Jones New Orleans, LA Exh KO 3
14 Dec Eddie Simms Cleveland, OH KO 1
(Simms, stunned by a punch, turned to ref Arthur Donovan and
said "lets go for a walk on the roof."
Donovan promptly stopped the fight.)

11 Jan Steve Ketchell Buffalo, NY KO 2
29 Jan Bob Pastor New York, NY W 10
(Weights: Louis 203, Pastor 179)
17 Feb Natie Brown Kansas City, MO KO4
Apr Seal Harris Wichita, Ks EX-KO 2
-This bout was held during Apr-May 1937;
Jun Seal Harris Houston, Tx EX 2
22 Jun James Braddock Chicago, IL KO8
(Won World Heavyweight Title)
30 Aug Tommy Farr New York, NY W15
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)
23 Feb Nathan Mann New York, NY KO3
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)
1 Apr Harry Thomas Chicago, IL KO5
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)
22 Jun Max Schmeling New York, NY KO1
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)

25 Jan John Henry Lewis New York, NY KO1
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)
17 Apr Jack Roper Los Angeles, CA KO1
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)
28 Jun Tony Galento New York, NY KO4
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)
20 Sep Bob Pastor Detroit, MI KO11
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)

9 Feb Arturo Godoy New York, NY W15
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)
29 Mar Johnny Paychek New York, NY KO2
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)
2o Jun Arturo Godoy New York, NY KO8
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)
16 Dec Al McCoy Boston, MA KO6
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)

31 Jan Red Burman New York, NY KO5
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)
17 Feb Gus Dorazio Philadelphia, PA KO2
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)
21 Mar Abe Simon Detroit, MI KO13
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)
8 Apr Tony Musto St. Louis, MO KO9
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)
23 May Buddy Baer Washington, DC WDQ 7
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)
18 Jun Billy Conn New York, NY KO13
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)
11 Jul Jim Robinson Minneapolis, MN Exh KO 1
29 Sep Lou Nova New York, NY KO6
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)
25 Nov George Giambastiani Los Angeles, CA Exh 4

9 Jan Buddy Baer New York, NY KO1
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)
27 Mar Abe Simon New York, NY KO6
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)
5 Jun George Nicholson Fort Hamilton, NY Exh 3
12 Oct Billy Conn New York, NY Sch-x

Louis joined the Army and toured with the armed forces giving exhibitions

3 Nov Johnny Denson Detroit, MI Exh KO2
6 Nov Charley Crump Baltimore, MD Exh 3
9 Nov Dee Amos Hartford, CT Exh 3
13 Nov Jimmy Bell Washington, DC Exh 3
14 Nov Johnny Davis Buffalo, NY KO 1(0:56)
(Title at risk as per NY Commission Ruling; 6 oz gloves)
15 Nov Dee Amos Elizabeth, NJ Exh 3
17 Nov Dee Amos Camden, NJ Exh 3
24 Nov Dan Merritt Chicago, IL Exh 3

15 Nov Sugarlip Anderson San Francisco, CA Exh 2
15 Nov Big Boy Brown San Francisco, CA Exh 2
29 Nov Big Boy Brown Sacramento, CA Exh 2
29 Nov Bobby Lee Sacramento, CA Exh 2
10 Dec Bob Frazier Victoria, Canada Exh 3
11 Dec Big Boy Brown Portland, OR Exh 2
11 Dec Dave Johnson Portland, OR Exh 2
12 Dec Big Boy Brown Eugene, OR Exh 3
13 Dec Big Boy Brown Vancouver, Canada Exh 3

19 Jun Billy Conn New York, NY KO8
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)
18 Sep Tami Mauriello New York, NY KO1
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)
11 Nov Cleo Everett Honolulu, HI Exh 4
11 Nov Wayne Powell Honolulu, HI Exh 2
25 Nov Perk Daniels Mexicali, Mexico Exh 4

7 Feb Arturo Godoy Mexico City Exh 10
10 Feb Art Ramsey San Salvador Exh 3
10 Feb Walter Hafer San Salvador Exh 3
12 Feb Art Ramsey Panama City Exh 3
19 Feb Arturo Godoy Santiago, Chile Exh 6
27 Feb Art Ramsey Medellin, Colombia Exh 2
27 Feb Walter Hafer Medellin, Colombia Exh 2
10 Mar Walter Hafer Havana Exh 2
10 Mar Art Ramsey Havana Exh 2
-- Mar Walter Hafer Trinidad Exh 2
-- Mar Baba Adams Trinidad Exh 2
6 Jun Rusty Payne San Diego, CA Exh 2
6 Jun Dick Underwood San Diego, CA Exh 2
13 Jun Tiger Jack Fox Spokane, WA Exh 4
23 Jun Harry Wills Los Angeles Exh 4

5 Dec Jersey Joe Walcott New York, NY W15
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)

29 Jan Bob Foxworth Chicago, IL Exh 4
9 Feb Leo Matriccianni Site Exh 4
25 Jun Jersey Joe Walcott New York, NY KO11
(Retained World Heavyweight Title)

30 Sep Pat Comiskey Washington, DC Exh 6
28 Oct Merritt Wynn Atlanta, GA Exh 3
28 Oct Bob Garner Atlanta, GA Exh 3
29 Oct Bob Garner Norfolk, VA Exh 4
31 Oct Bob Garner New Orleans, LA Exh 4
1 Nov Bob Garner New Orleans, LA Exh 3
3 Nov Bob Garner Nashville, TN Exh 4
8 Nov Johnny Shkor Boston, MA Exh 4
9 Nov Bernie Reynolds New Haven, CT Exh 4
17 Nov Jimmy Bivins Cleveland, OH Exh 6
19 Nov Vern Mitchell Detroit, MI Exh 6
23 Nov Kid Riviera St. Louis, MO Exh 4
24 Nov Ray Augustus Oklahoma City, OK Exh KO2
25 Nov Curt Kennedy Kansas City, MO Exh 4
29 Nov Billy Smith Cincinnati, OH Exh 4
10 Dec Billy Conn Chicago, IL Exh 6
14 Dec Arturo Godoy Philadelphia, PA Exh 6
16 Dec Pat Comiskey Patterson, NJ Exh 6
20 Dec Willie James Lewiston, ME Exh 4

10 Jan Sterling Ingram Omaha, NE Exh 4
11 Jan Orlando Ott Topeka, KS Exh 4
12 Jan Hubert Hood Witchita, KS Exh 4
17 Jan Art Swiden Toledo, OH Exh 4
18 Jan Dick Hagen Moline, IL Exh 4
19 Jan Orlando Ott Rochester, MN Exh 4
25 Jan Elmer Ray Miami, FL Exh 6
27 Jan George Fitch Palm Beach, FL Exh 4
28 Jan Nino Valdes Tampa, FL Exh 4
31 Jan Dixie Lee Oliver Orlando, FL Exh KO4
1 Feb Elmer Ray Jacksonville, FL Exh KO4
3 Feb Bill Graves Daytona, FL Exh KO3
4 Feb George Fitch Savannah, GA Exh 4
23 Feb Edgar Edwards Kingston Exh 3
-- Feb Al Kinsley Aruba Exh 4
1 Mar Announced Official Retirement and formation of
International Boxing Club with Jim Norris and Arthur Wirtz
1 Mar Ed Crawley Nassau Exh 4
4 Mar Omelio Agramonte Havana Exh 4
5 Mar Omelio Agramonte Oriente, Cuba Exh 4
16 Mar Elmer Ray Houston, TX Exh KO4
18 Mar Tex Brodie Dallas, TX Exh 4
22 Mar Hubert Hood St. Paul, MN Exh 6
3 Oct Abel Cestac Washington, DC Exh 4
10 Oct Curtis Sheppard Baltimore, MD Exh 4
24 Oct Bill Weinberg Providence, RI Exh 4
25 Oct Joe Domonic Hartford, CT Exh 4
31 Oct Bill Gilliam Atlantic City, NJ Exh 4
14 Nov Johnny Shkor Boston, MA Exh 10
22 Nov Joe Chesul Newark, NJ Exh 10
28 Nov Johnny Flynn Kansas City, MO Exh 10
7 Dec Pat Valentino Chicago, IL Exh KO8
14 Dec Roscoe Toles Detroit, MI Exh 5
14 Dec Johnny Flynn Detroit, MI Exh 5
19 Dec Al Hoosman Oakland, CA Exh KO5
21 Dec Jay Lambert Salt Lake City, UT Exh 5
21 Dec Rex Layne Salt Lake City, UT Exh 5

6 Jan Willie Bean Hollywood, CA Exh 6
10 Jan Jack Flood Seattle, WA Exh 6
12 Jan Clarence Henry Wilmington, DE Exh 4
13 Jan Al Spaulding San Diego, CA Exh 4
20 Jan Andy Walker Stockton, CA Exh 4
24 Jan Rex Layne Salt Lake City, UT Exh 4
1 Feb Gene Jones Miami, FL Exh 8
7 Feb Nino Valdes St. Petersburg, FL Exh 4
8 Feb Candy McDaniels Orlando, FL Exh 5
14 Feb Johnny Haynes Tampa, FL Exh 4
21 Feb Sid Peaks Jacksonville, FL Exh 6
23 Feb Dan Bolston Macon, GA Exh 1
23 Feb Leo Jackson Macon, GA Exh 3
27 Feb Willie Johnson Albany, GA Exh 4
28 Feb Dan Bolston Columbus, GA Exh 4
3 Mar Leo Johnson Waycross, GA Exh 4
18 Mar Kid Carr Lubbock, TX Exh 4
20 Mar Sterling Ingram Odessa, TX Exh 4
22 Mar Joe Santell El Paso, TX Exh 4
22 Mar John McFalls El Paso, TX Exh 4
24 Mar Henry Hall Austin, TX Exh 4
25 Mar J.K. Homer Waco, TX Exh 4
22 Apr Walter Hafer Rio de Janiero Exh KO2

7 Sep Ezzard Charles New York, NY L15
(For World Heavyweight Title)
29 Nov Cesar Brion Chicago, IL W10

3 Jan Freddie Beshore Detroit, MI KO4
7 Feb Omelio Agramonte Miami, FL W10
23 Feb Andy Walker San Francisco, CA KO10
2 May Omelio Agramonte Detroit, MI W10
15 Jun Lee Savold New York, NY KO6
(Prior to this match, Savold was recognized as Heavyweight Champion
by the British Board of Boxing Control; following this fight,
the BBBC recognized Ezzard Charles)

1 Aug Cesar Brion San Francisco, CA W10
15 Aug Jimmy Bivins Baltimore, MD W10
26 Oct Rocky Marciano New York, NY KO by 8

18 Nov U.S. Serviceman Tokyo Exh KO 4
18 Nov U.S. Serviceman Tokyo Exh KO 4
18 Nov U.S. Serviceman Tokyo Exh 3
18 Nov Cpt Buford J DeCordova Tokyo Exh 4
18 Nov Cpt Buford J DeCordova Tokyo Exh 4
18 Nov Cpt Buford J DeCordova Tokyo Exh 5
14 Dec Sgt. Lindy Brooks Sendai, Japan Exh 3
14 Dec Chang Pulu Taipei Exh KO1
14 Dec Sgt. Seth Woodbury Taipei Exh 2
14 Dec D.H. Camtrell Taipei Exh 2
14 Dec Cpt Buford J DeCordova Taipei Exh 3
16 Dec Cpt Buford J DeCordova Taipei Exh 3

16 Mar Don "Cowboy Rocky" Lee W
(Above was Louis's debut as a wrestler)

04-12-2006, 06:50 PM
yeah a few years back I went to Arlington, and saw Louis's, JFK's, Taft's, One Todd Lincoln, Audie Murphy and a few other people bury there.

Now Louis's, JFK, Todd, were easy to find. But man, it took a while to find Audie Murphy's lol. And Taft was Just hided behind some bushs if I recall, he was pretty hard to find.

But its was real easy to find the Brown Bomber's grave site. and Yes it still gets vistors.

Roberto Aqui
04-12-2006, 07:12 PM
Thank goodness President Reagan waived whatever qualifications Louis lacked to be buried at Arlington. What Louis did for the country could never be paid back and he was certainly never properly recognized.

Kid Achilles
04-12-2006, 08:51 PM
In my opinion, the one true claimant to the title of greatest of all time.

Elmer Ray
04-13-2006, 12:27 AM
joe louis the greatest heavyweight of all time

04-13-2006, 07:57 AM

mike casey
04-13-2006, 02:07 PM
Dan Daniel of The Ring, a terrific writer on boxing and baseball, called Louis the greatest fighter he ever saw.

We all know what Joe could do, but not enough is written about the terrific courage he showed in his losing fights (just three in 71 mind you). Look at the film of the first Schmeling fight - and I mean LOOK at it - Louis took a terrible sustained pounding.

I can't go into the weight/punching power debate right now, but I would bet my very life on Joe ripping through the current breed -even without Jack Blackburn in his corner.

Joe was a one-off like Dempsey. No amount of pseudo-analysis or statistics can put a definitive lock on those two wonders.

All the best,

Mike Casey

Ted Spoon
04-13-2006, 03:27 PM
Louis has got by on his legacy, but his fighting prowess is often bent out of proportion to help meet his historical significance halfway.

Was off balance allot of the time (over rotated), low left that he never fully attented too, but only fought the kind of opposition that could display his deficiencies rather than completely exploit them.

When Ted Spoon sees Dempsey and Louis written together I envision one scenario: Annihilation of the Brown Bomber.

mike casey
04-13-2006, 03:49 PM
Ted, I agree with your last point. Check out my website for my opinion of Dempsey (www.grandslampage.net)

But Louis, Ali and Johnson were surely the other superior talents.

Elmer Ray
04-13-2006, 03:51 PM
Louis has got by on his legacy, but his fighting prowess is often bent out of proportion to help meet his historical significance halfway.

Was off balance allot of the time (over rotated), low left that he never fully attented too, but only fought the kind of opposition that could display his deficiencies rather than completely exploit them.

When Ted Spoon sees Dempsey and Louis written together I envision one scenario: Annihilation of the Brown Bomber.

you talk of joe louis opposition, but who in jack dempseys opposition makes u think he can handle a joe louis?

I see louis knocking out dempsey. i cant see dempsey coming into louis and surving as great as jack is.

04-14-2006, 03:04 PM
i would love to see louis and murphys grave. one thing about murphy- he was as brave a man who ever lived-no man is braver than him. joe and jack are my two favorties. louis was capable of anythibg and id never be surpirised he took out demspey-demspey same thing-ms capable of anything - i tend to favor dempsey was the great heavy talent with louis ali next.

mike casey
04-14-2006, 04:23 PM
All feelings here mutual, Mike. Well said indeed.

Mike, sorry for this personal boring diatribe, but I'll call you Sat or Sun instead of Good Friday as promised. Something went down bad last night and I'm feeling pretty rough.

Take good care, slugger.

Yours slightly yellow and in the bathroom.

Mike Casey

HE Grant
04-14-2006, 05:01 PM
As much as I love Dempsey, I see Louis as an extremely dangerous match up for him. Louis was such a sharp, fast puncher...to see Dempsey come in swinging , I just don't know...Dempsey would have to get to him real fast and nail him super hard to take it. Otherwise, I see Louis teeing off and crushing him.

04-14-2006, 05:08 PM
During the 50th anniversary of Jackie Robinson's entrance into MLB there was a lot of well deserved hoopla. But I kept thinking about the Brown Bomber & how nobody was mentioning him as the figure who opened the door for Robinson.

I was a watching a baseball special on Robinson & they interviewed venerable former Reds & Tigers manager, Sparky Anderson. The interviewer assumed that DiMaggio had been Sparky's childhood hero. Sparrky replied (& i'm parphrasing this was back in I believe 97 or 99), "Oh no. My hero was Joe Louis. His victory over Schmeling is the greatest sports moment of my lifetime".

Then he went on: I have nothing but respect for Robinson but it angers me that in all this commotion over his anniversary I haven't heard anybody mention Joe Louis.

Without Joe Louis there never would have been a Jackie Robinson".

Another sports figure who was interviewed on that show was the also venerable Grambling football coach, Eddie Robinson. He said that he could remember huddling around the radio with half the neighborhood listening to Joe's fights on the radio.

He said that when Louis fought Schmeling & won, the reaction wasn't celebration at first - all these people started crying ... He said, "That was the first time any of us had ever heard a black man described as an American".

Is that mind wobbling or what???