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Thread: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

  1. #181
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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    Of course, Buck....I never saw your dad box, but I remember the name well. It was Harry Fine, an Oakland fight man, who last mentioned your dad to me about 1952, when we were talking about good fighters and he commented that Joe Schlocker was one of them in the old days. Joe Schlocker and Joe Laymon were familiar names on the programs in southern California back then.

    hap navarro

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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    Buck, welcome to the CBZ Message Board. While looking at California newspapers on microfilm for boxing research purposes, I became somewhat familiar with your father, Joe Schlocker, who had a very interesting career. I hope that you can share more information about your father with us in the future.

    - Chuck Johnston
    Last edited by Chuck1052; 05-13-2009 at 02:47 PM.

  3. #183
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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    MEET DOC KEARNS

    Talking about Doc Kearns with my friend Don Cogswell recently brought to mind one rather memorable experience I had with the wily, never-at-a-loss- for-words "doctor".

    It happened back in 1956 when I was handling the Bobo OLson camp and press for the state record-breaking bout with Sugar Ray Robinson, outdoors at L.A.'s Wrigley Field.

    I was alone in the Hollywood Legion press room when a local scribe called for a new slant on the coming fight. As I struggled to come up with something, tall, gaunt Doc Kearns appeared at the doorway. With only a nod and a smile of recognition I handed him the telephone with a suggestion, "Here's Doc Kearns hold on." Then to the man, I said "Talk to this guy, will ya Doc?"

    He did. With a flair that might well be honed through years of carnival spieling. The result was a dandy write up in the next day's paper, thanks to the cagey "doctor".

    What impressed me was the way he could weave a believable yarn; his build up of Olson in that moment was the right thing to do because he was offering an opinion while visiting the fighter's camp. Doc rarely spoke unwisely.

    hap navarro

  4. #184
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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO


  5. #185
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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    To Clarify:

    Shortly after this column appeared the Hollywood Legion Board of Directors and the IB Guild settled their differences peaceably and we were able to match Guild fighters against non Guild fighters from that time on. I left the Legion a year and a half later and the Legion stopped promoting boxing four years after I left. They had been showing regularly since 1921 For the record.

    hap navarro.

  6. #186
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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    hello hap,

    good to see that article posted and good as well to see you posting. been awhile. hope you are feeling fine.

    keep punching.

    greg

  7. #187
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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    Thank you, Greg. At my age every day is a gift, my friend. All is in good order for the nonce, but the aches and pains visit one regularly at 90 plus.

    I wanted to clear up the above column because there was nothing personal with the IBG and myself. It was a Legion board decision to back the LA managers group instead and I just did my job as best I could under the circumstances. I never met Mr. Parker and to this day I do not know how he ever heard about me. Ancient history, Greg.

    Saludos mi amigo

    hap navarro

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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    I don’t know who, or what, everybody on this forum in boxing is, or was. Little by little I find out. So I googled the name Hap Navarro and found an interesting boxing person. From now on I’ll read your posts with extra interest!

    Regards Theo

  9. #189
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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    hello theo,

    yes hap is someone you want to study up on. go back through the old threads and you will see he was a frequent poster a few years back. you will also find some photos of his induction into the california boxing hall of fame in 2006.

    hap is a genuine golden oldie and a treasure here at the ZONE. i was a born angelino and was on that boxing scene during the resurgence in the late 60's and early 70's. a lot what i learned of LA boxing before that time, the great stories about aragon bolanos and salas and so many others, i learned from two men in particular on this board. one is frank baltazar and the other is hap. both great gentlemen and both hall of fame inductees.

    we keep some heady company in the ZONE , you would be surprised.

    greg

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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    Quote Originally Posted by gregbeyer
    hello theo,

    yes hap is someone you want to study up on. go back through the old threads and you will see he was a frequent poster a few years back. you will also find some photos of his induction into the california boxing hall of fame in 2006.
    Hello Greg, I canít say Iíve heard the name Nap Navarro before but at the same time it sounds very familiar.

    Quote Originally Posted by gregbeyer
    we keep some heady company in the ZONE , you would be surprised.

    greg
    Iím very curious to find out. Can you open the curtain a little bid? That would be much appreciated!

    Theo

  11. #191
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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    theo,

    i really don't want to out anybody. i know of a few more that you would recognize that want to remain on the QT. of course the names randy gordon and ron lipton are very well known in boxing as well as former title contender john scully.

    another thing about hap is , i believe, he is the uncle of musician dave navarro. hap is credited for the spanish translation on some of dave's songs.

    greg

  12. #192
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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    http://www.cyberboxingzone.com/news/...s/00002375.htm

    theo,

    here is the link to my article on haps induction.

    greg

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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO



    Hap Navarro (R) with former middleweight Willie Vaughn
    Circa mid-'50's

  14. #194
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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    Quote Originally Posted by gregbeyer
    theo,

    i really don't want to out anybody. i know of a few more that you would recognize that want to remain on the QT. of course the names randy gordon and ron lipton are very well known in boxing as well as former title contender john scully.
    Well I'll find out! Someday someone makes a slip of the tongue. Something like 'when I knocked out Hearns in the third', then I know itís Hagler.

    Quote Originally Posted by gregbeyer
    another thing about hap is , i believe, he is the uncle of musician dave navarro. hap is credited for the spanish translation on some of dave's songs.

    greg
    Iím into rock guitar playing heavily! So I'll investigate Dave Navarro some more. This must be him:
    Navarro Shreds
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xuc3z...eature=related

    Quote Originally Posted by gregbeyer
    http://www.cyberboxingzone.com/news/...s/00002375.htm

    theo,

    here is the link to my article on haps induction.

    greg
    I'd read it, nice article! And great quality pictures!

  15. #195
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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    Happy Birthday to our friend Hap Navarro. Hap turns a young 92 today...

  16. #196
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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    "Cent anni" my friend !

  17. #197
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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    To quote Mr. Welk "Thank you, boys" I'm over ripe at this stage. I answered some greetings on Facebook but do not know if they got through okay. Thanks again.

    hap

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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    Happy Birthday Hap.

    Randy

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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    Thank you, Randy. Been reading your posts on the Forum with delight, especially when you share your memories of olden times. You fellows are on a roll. Stay healthy and content, Wing Master, now and always.

    hap

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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    Thanks Hap. That means a lot.

    Randy

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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    If memory serves:

    He was just a little guy when I first met him. But Lordy how he grew in statu;e as a trainer and manager. That was Oakland's Dick Sadler, who guided a small stable of boxers in the mid 1950s that included featherweight Augie Villa and middleweight Govan Small.

    On a tip from friend Don Chargin I offered Dick a couple of prelim spots on a few Legion Stadium cards and the man drove the enormous distance from Oakland to Hollywod to show his prize pupils at our club. Both Villa and Small were instant hits at Hoillywood and wnt on to box main events in southern California. Small being the most promising even managed to press Gene Fulmer in a couple of ten round bouts though losing both times.

    Snall was involved in a weird match with Petey Servin at the LA OLympic when he was kayoed in the final round of a bout in which he ws clearly ahead. Govan was distracted by a phone that rang in press row and he stopped fighting, leaving himself wide open for a Servin haymaker.
    Dick Sadler went on to manage other good fighters and is now a member of the World Hall of Fame after developing none other than the heavyweight champion of the world George Foreman.

    hap navarro

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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    A peek inside the matchmaker's office.

    Sounds like an interesting sight to behold. But not always.

    Some I have seen are dressed for the occasion, with old time posters and dozens of photos of boxing's greatest heroes decorating the walls. The one I was most familiar with was the Hollywood Legion Stadium "cubicle" that had to be all of 12 x 12 feet of floor space, almost barren, except fo a file cabinet plus a desk and a couple of chairs. Hard to imagine thousands of bucks being transacted in ssuch cramped quarters.

    Still, that was a huge improvement over what the first MM at the Legion Frank Crowley,had to work with. Frank told me his office in the early 1920s was his vest pocket. No place to hang a photo.

    The most successful MM at the place was Charley McDonald. But he too, had to endure the spartan confines of the office which he embellished a bit by displaying an inscribed picture of actor George Raft wherein he offers to fight a main event for a mere $15,000.

    Legion MM Von Stumme had one photo on his wall. In tribute to a Legion Legend he showed a picture of Capt. Seth Strelinger, the first State Athletic Commission Chairman and a calendar. Stumme's successor, Cal Working had a sense of humor an d hung a shot of a pissed-off baboon grimly seated in waist-high water with the words "To Hell with the bastards" printed below.Plus a calendar.

    I copied them all.....I, too, hung a calendar on my wall.

    The only times I met with Babe McCoy were at his apartment office on the top floor of the Mayan Hotel in West LA. The hotel elevator opened at his suite directly in front of his enormous desk. He had a huge framed photo of veteran trainer Duke Holloway to the right of his desk. It was a masterful portrait of a key boxing figure in the state.

    hap

  23. #203
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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    This thread should be edited into a book. Hap is the man!

    EMF

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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    You may be right, EMF, but I probably have more folks reading this stuff of mine now without having to shell out the price of a tome.....especially with the current print pricres being wht they are......thanks for the kind and friendly thought.

    hap

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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    California boxing fans have enjoyed the work of a long list of noteworthy matchmakers since the late 19th century Determining who was the very best among them is no easy task. From my own personal experience in the sport two names come to mind. One would be Tom Gallery, who was the MM at Hollywood Legion Stadium from 1925-1931. In time he also made matches for the Olympic Auditorium and many southland outdoor shows as well as at Dreamland in San Fancisco. A capable man, Tom went on to become an executive with the Dumont radio and TV group.

    Another nominee would be George Parnassus, a skillled fight man who became MM at the Olympic in LA during 1957. But he did not stop there. George is the only man to have made use of all the major boxing venues in the southland. He also showed at the Sports Arena, the Forum, Wrigley Field, the Coliseum and Dodger Stadium.He brought big time boxing to California by importing many of the top names in the world wide game. His blockbuster shows may never be equaled as they were not only well programmed but they left unprecedented receipts at the box office And that was long before the advent of Pay Per View as we know it today..

    George also had one other trump card............he was very well connected with the sport in Mexico as he was the leading importer of Mexican talent for years before his ascennt to matchmaking. He had preference in dealing with Mexco's top fight managers and their stable stars.[

    This was the same man who in 1934 was seen standing on the running board of a moving car with a megaphone pressed to his lips plugging the boxing show of that night at El Centro's tiny arena.


    hap navarro

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    Re: THE HISTORY OF L.A. BOXING by HAP NAVARRO

    I was referring to Babe McCoy's tenure as matchmaker previously on another thread. So to continue in that vein it should be said that he began his stint while suibbing for the Olympic's regular matchmaker, Joe Waterman, in 1942. The Olympic had gone dark for a period of 32 weeks in 1940 and 1941.

    The club's first show in 1941 was on March 11, when a youthful Joe Lynch came into the promotional field as an aide to the ailing Joe Waterman. Their first show had Richie Lemos and Guy Serean in the top spot. The two continued with some success until year's end. Waterman's health did not improve much, so Lynch joined forces with ex-Legion matchmaker Tom Gallery to start 1942. The club remained dark through January as their first show did not take place until February 3, with Chalky Wright and Richie Lemos in the main event. From that time on the future of the huge auditorium looked rather bleak. The place would remain dark for as long as four weeks at a time. That is when Gallery pulled out and Lynch went on his own for a short time. Lynch's last show was on May 26, 1942 with George Latka facing Richie Lemos in the feature bout.

    Australian sports figure Snowy Baker stepped into the spotlilght after the Olympic had gone without a show for seven weeks between May and July, 1942, and wirth McCoy filling in for his friend Joe Waterman, the club re-opened modestly on July 21, 942 with an eight round main event that had Jack Chase and Big Boy Hogue featured. The entire card consisted of 29 scheduled rounds with a five round semi windup and four four round prelims.

    Timing, and the advent of WW II plus an uncommon influx of Mexican boxing talent from below the border that originated with George Parnassus in command, all contributed to the enormous success of the Olympic Auditorium and Babe McCoy as its matchmaker. After all of those shaky years the Grand Olympic drew 9,000 fans to witness the Slugger White versus John Thomas natural on April 20, 1943.

    As for saving the cavernous boxing venue some consideration should be given to old timer Joe Levy, who took over as MM there early in 1925 when the place was in danger for the first time, of losing out. It was he who made extremely competetive matches for a full year before yielding the reins to Jack Doyle and MM Wad Wadhams in 1927.


    hap

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