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|Real name||Jerry Quarry|
|Nickname(s)||Irish, The Bellflower Bomber|
May 15, 1945|
|Died||January 3, 1999(aged 53)|
|Wins by KO||32|
Jerry Quarry (May 15, 1945 - January 3, 1999), nicknamed "Irish" or “The Bellflower Bomber,” was an American heavyweight boxer. Quarry was rated by Ring Magazine as the most popular fighter in the sport, from 1968–1971, during the peak of his career.
- 1 Overview
- 2 Boxing career
- 3 Physical and mental decline
- 4 Hall of fame and death
- 5 Professional boxing record
- 6 References
- 7 External links
Quarry was a durable and smart counter-puncher/action fighter, often noted for his surprising agility in the ring. He had fast hands, an excellent left hook, and punched well with both hands. He also had a remarkable chin, although his major flaw was a tendency to cut easily and the bad luck to box in the era of Ali, Frazier, Foreman, Patterson and Norton. He was six feet (1.83 metres) tall and weighed 195-pounds (88 kilograms) in his prime, which whilst comparable to many heavyweight boxers then, still put him on the slightly smaller side of the division. He would today be considered cruiser-weight.
He was the most visible of a significant fighting family, which included three other pro boxers (his father and two brothers). Quarry's father first put gloves on his son at five years. His career, he felt, was decided for him at a very young age.
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Quarry came to notice by winning the 1965 National Golden Gloves championship in Kansas City at age 19. He knocked out each of his five opponents, a feat unmatched before or since. Quarry began his pro career in March 1965, winning a decision against Gene Hamilton in Los Angeles, California.
Quarry's first loss came against veteran and former contender Eddie Machen in 1966, which was his twenty-first fight within two full years as a pro.
In mid-1967, the World Boxing Association (W.B.A.) held a tournament to replace Muhammad Ali, a heavyweight champion who had been stripped of his title for refusing induction into the military. Quarry had three convincing wins early in that year to improve his ranking, but also had a draw with former champion Floyd Patterson.
Title match v Ellis
Quarry was named to the eight-man tournament field, where in his first match he once again defeated Patterson with multiple knockdowns. He then defeated ranked tournament favorite Thad Spencer, which brought him to national attention. In the tournament final, Jimmy Ellis defeated Quarry on a split decision to become the new WBA Heavyweight Champion Of The World. Quarry was later stung by criticism that the match was considered dull, and this was allegedly this what made him decide to trade with Frazier for the next title shot.
Title match v Joe Frazier
Quarry, 22 years old and still popular, mounted a comeback and had four straight wins. In 1969, Quarry beat contender Buster Mathis.
He was then given a title shot by Joe Frazier for Frazier's WBA title. Quarry lost the fight on cuts via a seventh-round technical knockout despite leading in the early rounds. The high-action match was called Ring Magazine's Fight of The Year. Quarry impressed many by taking Frazier's best punches without a knockdown.
Other matches, Chuvalo
Quarry returned to win two more fights that year, before a loss to Canadian George Chuvalo. After getting up quickly from a knockdown at the count of four, Quarry went back to one knee and didn't stand again until the count of 10, and was therefore counted out, officially a knockout under the rules of boxing. At the time, Quarry was well ahead on the three judges' scorecards. Former Harlem Globetrotter Zack Clayton was the referee.
Early 1970s Foster & Ali (1)
Quarry had two wins in early 1970 before being matched with the big hitting and undefeated #1 ranked contender Mac Foster (24-0-0, 24 knockouts). Quarry, weighing 196, impressed boxing fans with a sound KO win. It returned him to contention, and it remains one of the peak wins of his career.
Later, in Atlanta, he would fight Muhammad Ali, who was making his return to boxing in October 1970 after a 3-year exile. Quarry, it was rumoured,[who?] was the only ranked heavyweight willing to meet the former champion. The first two rounds were competitive, but Quarry's corner stopped the fight at the end of the 3rd round when Ali opened a deep cut over Quarry's left eye. Quarry then had four straight wins, and also pursued acting and various business ventures. In November 1971, he went to London, England and fought the British Commonwealth Heavyweight Champion, Jack Bodell. Quarry defeated the British Champion in 61 seconds of the first round to the cheers of Irishmen in the crowd. He was 26 years old and a millionaire despite never having been world heavyweight champion.
The second Ali match
In 1972, Quarry added two more wins before getting his rematch with Ali. He was ranked #2 at fight time. The match was part of a racially motivated 'Soul Brothers versus the Quarry Brothers' event promoted by Don King; it included his brother Mike Quarry fighting Bob Foster for the world light-heavyweight title. Jerry went into the fight after watching his brother Mike get KO'd and remain on his back for five minutes. In the opening round, Quarry tried to intimidate Ali by lifting him off the canvas in an early clinch. Nevertheless, Ali dominated the fight before it was stopped in the seventh round.
Quarry, now managed by Gil Clancy, again bounced back to have perhaps his best year in 1973. Quarry soundly defeated ranked contenders Ron Lyle (19-0-0,17 knockouts) and Earnie Shavers (45-2-0, 44 knockouts) that year at Madison Square Garden. The first was a dominant decision over twelve rounds, the later a stunning 1st Round TKO. Champion George Foreman, a Quarry fan, later claimed that he dodged Quarry throughout his career, although nowadays Foreman has claimed to have avoided or tried to avoid a number of other fighters, including Joe Frazier, Ken Norton and Earnie Shavers.
Disappointed that a title shot against Foreman in 1974 would not materialize, Quarry tried hard to get contending fights against Don King fighters, but could not get contracts signed. He had one more win before meeting Joe Frazier, one of the few willing to meet him, for the rematch which many expected years earlier.
Quarry weighed 197.5 pounds for the fight. He tried to out-box Frazier, and scored well in the opening round. He then began to fade under Frazier's heavy pressure. At the end of the 4th round Frazier knocked Quarry down with a left hook to the body just before the bell. Quarry was visibly injured by the body punch, but tried to continue. The fight was then stopped quickly in the 5th round when it was obvious he couldn't continue. Former heavyweight champion Joe Louis was the referee for the bout, and looked very unsure on how to handle the proceedings. Joe Louis never refereed another fight.
1975 Ken Norton
Quarry launched yet another comeback in 1975. He won one fight and then was dodged by many potential opponents until Ken Norton signed up in April after two of his opponents backed out Quarry took the fight with little more than two weeks notice. Jerry came in at a career high of 207 pounds and did not look in shape. Quarry gave another determined effort, hurting Norton in the furious all out 3rd, while bleeding from a cut. However, Quarry ran out of steam and Norton launched a powerful and decisive counterattack and the referee stopped the contest when ringsiders started calling for a halt to prevent further punishment to Quarry.
Quarry retired after the Norton fight, having had many wars before the age of 30. Quarry was 50-8-4 at this time, with 32 KOs. He had two losses each to Frazier and Ali plus one apiece to Norton, Chuvalo, Ellis and Machen. He had been ranked as high as the #1 contender and won most of his matches while weighing under 200 pounds.
Quarry, who had acted in various programs on ABC to this point, including ' Batman ', ' Adam-12 ', ' I Dream Of Jeannie ' and ' The Six Million Dollar Man ', also did boxing commentary for ABC's "Wide World Of Sports." An excellent athlete, Quarry made the event Finals in 'The Superstars' competition in 1974, going against many NFL stars. His performance that year is still the highest score of any boxer in the history of the long-running contest.
Comeback win 1977
Quarry launched a comeback in November 1977, meeting the fast but light hitting Italian European Champion Lorenzo Zanon before a star-studded Las Vegas crowd. He fought seven losing rounds until his left hook turned the tables and knocked Zanon out in the ninth round. Following the fight, Quarry stated he was merely rusty and intended to fight his way back into shape. However he decided to retire again, this time for five years.
Quarry, married three times and the victim of several failed business ventures, could not remain retired. In 1983, at age 37, he decided to climb into the ring once again.
ASports Illustrated reporter was researching an article about health problems among retired boxers, especially among those who started as child boxers. The reporter met with Quarry, and although Quarry appeared to be in good health, his performance on several simple cognitive tests was shockingly poor. This was the harbinger of the mental decline that would eventually destroy the last part of his life - dementia pugilistica, the atrophy of the brain from repeated blows to the head, eventually leading to an Alzheimer's-like state. A 1983 CT scan of Quarry's brain performed for the article and confidently agreed to by the fighter, showed classic evidence of brain atrophy including the characteristic cavum septi pellucidi found in many boxers with long careers.
The 1990s final comeback
Quarry had two wins in 1983, but the fights appeared to accelerate his mental decline. He was inactive as a boxer from 1984 to 1992, but continued to decline physically and mentally. His $5-million fortune evaporated and by 1990 Quarry was on social security. Denied a boxing license in most states because of his condition, Quarry found a loophole in Colorado that allowed him to schedule an October 30, 1992 bout with Ron Cramner, a cruiserweight 16 years Quarry's junior. At the age of 47 years and 6 months old, Quarry provided nothing more than a 6 round punching bag for the younger fighter, losing all six rounds and the decision. Only Quarry's courage and great chin let him last the full 6 rounds. Quarry was never the same after that fight.
Physical and mental decline
Within a few years, Quarry was unable to feed or dress himself and had to be cared for by relatives, mainly his brother James - the only one of the four Quarry brothers not to box professionally. Jerry's brother, Mike, who had contended for the light-heavyweight championship, was himself disabled by pugilistic dementia in later life and died as a result on June 11, 2006. Another brother, Bobby, suffers from Parkinson's disease, believed to be the result of his own, less-heralded heavyweight boxing career.
Hall of fame and death
Jerry Quarry was inducted into the World Boxing Hall of Fame in 1995. He attended the ceremony with the help of one of his brothers but as a TV documentary showed he seemed barely aware of the events, the dementia already being severe. His professional record was 53-9-4 with 32 KOs. He had been lauded by countless younger boxing stars as a true star of the sport and an inspiration. Said Joe Frazier: "A very tough man. He could have been a world champion, but cut too easily." His brothers Mike Quarry (deceased) and Bobby Quarry also were pro boxers. Mike lost to Bob Foster by knockout for the world light heavyweight title in 1972, but defeated several top light-heavyweights including Mike Rossman. Bobby fought 23 times as a professional heavyweight, once losing to high-ranked 1990's contender Tommy Morrison. Quarry was hospitalized with pneumonia on December 28, 1998 and then suffered cardiac arrest. He never regained consciousness and died on January 3, 1999. He is interred at Shafter Cemetery in Shafter, California. A foundation was established in his honor to battle boxing-related dementia, a condition that has afflicted many boxers and brought Quarry's life to an early end. Years later, Quarry still has a loyal legion of fans.
Professional boxing record
|53 Wins (32 knockouts, 11 decisions), 9 Losses (6 knockouts, 3 decision), 4 Draws |
|Loss||53-9-4||Ron Cranmer||UD||6||30/10/1992||Aurora, Colorado, United States||At 47, Quarry's legs were there, but after 9 years of inactivity, his skills were only memories as his reflexes were shot. Jerry took a jab beating from Cranmer, in this, his final comeback, fought at the cruiserweight limit. Inspired by Foreman's comeback.|
|Win||53-8-4||James Williams||MD||10||22/11/1983||Kern County Fairgrounds, Bakersfield, California, United States|
|Win||52-8-4||Lupe Guerra||TKO||1 (10)||31/08/1983||Civic Auditorium, Albuquerque, New Mexico, United States||Quarry raced across the ring and decked Guerra with the 1st punch he threw-his trademark left hook. Guerra got up, whereupon Quarry threw and landed a 3 punch combination and down went Guerra again. Guerra's corner then threw in the towel and the referee stopped the contest without bothering to count.|
|Win||51-8-4||Lorenzo Zanon||TKO||9 (10)||05/11/1977||Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||Zanon won every round on the officials scorecards until the 8th.|
|Loss||50-8-4||Ken Norton||TKO||5 (12)||24/03/1975||Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United States||For vacant NABF Heavyweight title. Title had been vacated by Muhammad Ali to challenge George Foreman for the WBC and WBA Heavyweight titles.|
|Win||50-7-4||George Johnson||UD||10||25/02/1975||International Center Arena, Honolulu, Hawaii, United States|
|Loss||49-7-4||Joe Frazier||TKO||5 (10)||17/06/1974||Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United States|
|Win||49-6-4||Joe Alexander||KO||2 (10)||08/05/1974||Nassau Coliseum, Uniondale, New York, United States||Quarry knocked down in the 1st. Alexander down twice in the 2nd.|
|Win||48-6-4||Earnie Shavers||TKO||1 (10)||14/12/1973||Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United States||A minute and a half into the round Jerry caught him with a tremendous left and dropped him with a following right. Shavers barely beat the count and Quarry immediately swarmed all over him. Referee Arthur Mercante called a halt at 2:21 of the 1st round.|
|Win||47-6-4||Tony Doyle||TKO||4 (10)||10/09/1973||Forum, Inglewood, California, United States|
|Win||46-6-4||James J Woody||TKO||2 (10)||31/08/1973||Convention Center, Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||Woody down three times in the 2nd round, and the 3 knockdown rule was in effect to stop the fight.|
|Win||45-6-4||Ron Lyle||UD||12||09/02/1973||Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United States||A short right hand in the 5th round caught Lyle on the chin and made his knees wobble. But there were only 30 seconds left and Lyle was able to survive the assault. In the 8th Quarry landed a looping left hook that caught Lyle by surprise and sent him staggering up against the ropes, but again Lyle made it through the round.|
|Win||44-6-4||Randy Neumann||TKO||7 (10)||09/02/1973||Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United States||Quarry softened up Neumann with hard body blows early in the fight then finished his opponent with a two-fisted attack to the head that forced ring physician, Dr. Edwin Campbell, to stop the bout before the bell sounded for the 8th round.|
|Loss||43-6-4||Muhammad Ali||TKO||7 (12)||27/06/1972||Convention Center, Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||For NABF Heavyweight title.|
|Win||43-5-4||Larry Middleton||PTS||10||09/05/1972||Empire Pool, Wembley, London, England, United Kingdom||Quarry's fitness and strength carried him through in the end, but Middleton's long reach caused him a lot of trouble. In the early rounds Middleton held his opponent off with long left hands. By the middle of the fight Quarry got his booming counter-punching going and punished Middleton severely to the body.|
|Win||42-5-4||Eduardo Corletti||KO||1 (10)||17/04/1972||Forum, Inglewood, California, United States||Corletti was knocked down twice.|
|Win||41-5-4||Lou Bailey||UD||10||02/12/1971||Des Moines, Iowa, United States||Quarry knocked Bailey down 6 times in the featured event, but failed to get a knockout. Quarry sent Bailey down twice in the opening round, three times in the 2nd and once in the 3rd.|
|Win||40-5-4||Jack Bodell||KO||1 (10)||16/11/1971||Empire Pool, Wembley, London, England, United Kingdom||Bodell attacked Quarry from the start, and showed a desire to brawl. Quarry, however, noticed Bodell swinging widely, and counterpunched Bodell hard enough for Bodell to go down and get back up. Quarry capitalized with a lightning fast counter right hook over the top that finished Bodell.|
|Win||39-5-4||Tony Doyle||UD||10||24/07/1971||Playboy Club Hotel, Wembley, Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, United States|
|Win||38-5-4||Dick Gosha||UD||10||18/06/1971||Ocean Shores, Washington, United States|
|Loss||37-5-4||Muhammad Ali||TKO||3 (15)||26/10/1970||City Auditorium, Atlanta, Georgia, United States||Fight stopped due to Quarry cut.|
|Win||37-4-4||Stamford Harris||TKO||6 (10)||08/09/1970||Auditorium, Miami Beach, Florida, United States|
|Win||36-4-4||Mac Foster||KO||6 (10)||17/06/1970||Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United States||Quarry broke Foster down with many left hooks to the body in round 5. He sent him sprawling in 6, and after a right cross to the head sent Foster through the ropes, the referee stopped it without a count.|
|Win||35-4-4||George Johnson||UD||10||19/03/1970||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States|
|Win||34-4-4||Rufus Brassell||KO||2 (10)||03/03/1970||Auditorium, Miami Beach, Florida, United States||Quarry was knocked down by a punch after the bell to end the 1st round.|
|Loss||33-4-4||George Chuvalo||KO||7 (10)||12/12/1969||Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United States||In round 7 Quarry was knocked down by a left hook on the top of the head. He rose at the count of 3, but decided to take a knee, he got up at the count of 10 instead of 9 and referee Zach Clayton declared the fight over at 2:59.|
|Win||33-3-4||Brian London||KO||2 (10)||03/09/1969||Oakland Arena, Oakland, California, United States||London was knocked down twice in the 2nd round.|
|Win||32-3-4||Johnny Carroll||KO||1 (10)||11/08/1969||Aldrich Arena, Saint Paul, Minnesota, United States||Carroll down 3 times.|
|Loss||31-3-4||Joe Frazier||TKO||7 (15)||23/06/1969||Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United States||For NYSAC World heavyweight title. In between rounds 7 and 8 the referee stops the fight because of the bad cut to Quarry's eye. 1969 Fight of the Year by The Ring Magazine.|
|Win||31-2-4||Buster Mathis||UD||12||24/03/1969||Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United States||Mathis was knocked down in the 2nd round. Quarry showed complete contempt for Mathis' punching power. He walked right in and dug searing hooks and solid rights to Buster's belly and ribs.|
|Win||30-2-4||Aaron Eastling||TKO||5 (10)||26/01/1969||Memorial Auditorium, Canton, Ohio, United States||Eastling dropped twice in the 4th.|
|Win||29-2-4||Charlie Reno||TKO||5 (10)||10/01/1969||Seattle Center Coliseum, Seattle, Washington, United States||Reno received one standing-eight count in the 5th round.|
|Win||28-2-4||Willis Earls||UD||10||19/11/1968||Freeman Coliseum, San Antonio, Texas, United States|
|Win||27-2-4||Bob Mumford||TKO||5 (10)||11/11/1968||Phoenix, Arizona, United States|
|Loss||26-2-4||Jimmy Ellis||MD||15||27/04/1968||Coliseum Arena, Oakland, California, United States||For vacant WBA World Heavyweight title.|
|Win||26-1-4||Thad Spencer||TKO||12 (12)||03/02/1968||Oakland Arena, Oakland, California, United States||WBA Heavyweight elimination tournament. Spencer was knocked down in the 4th and 10th rounds.|
|Win||25-1-4||Floyd Patterson||MD||12||28/10/1967||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States||Elimination tournament for WBA Heavyweight title. Quarry dropped Patterson with short rights to the head in the 2nd and 4th rounds. But he had to battle to hold his own in the late rounds as Patterson appeared to get stronger and take charge of the fiercely contested bout.|
|Win||24-1-4||Billy Daniels||KO||1 (10)||15/09/1967||Sports Arena, Los Angeles, California, United States|
|Draw||23-1-4||Floyd Patterson||MD||10||09/06/1967||Memorial Coliseum, Los Angeles, California, United States||Patterson down twice in the 2nd, Quarry down in the 7th.|
|Win||23-1-3||Alex Miteff||KO||3 (10)||27/04/1967||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States|
|Win||22-1-3||Brian London||UD||10||09/03/1967||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States|
|Win||21-1-3||Memphis Al Jones||KO||5 (10)||11/01/1967||Civic Auditorium, San Francisco, California, United States||Quarry was knocked down twice in the 3rd round.|
|Win||20-1-3||Joey Orbillo||UD||10||15/12/1966||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States||Orbillo was knocked down in the 4th round for a nine-count.|
|Win||19-1-3||Leslie Borden||KO||5 (10)||29/11/1966||Valley Music Theatre, Woodland Hills, California, United States|
|Win||18-1-3||Bill Nielsen||UD||10||20/10/1966||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States|
|Loss||17-1-3||Eddie Machen||UD||10||14/07/1966||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States||Machen seemed to hold Quarry, and his vaunted left hook in disdain and occasionally smirked, smiled and even laughed at his rather awkward young opponent. Machen paraded around the ring even before the verdict was announced.|
|Draw||17-0-3||Tony Alongi||PTS||10||27/05/1966||Sports Arena, Los Angeles, California, United States|
|Win||17-0-2||Memphis Al Jones||UD||10||27/05/1966||Municipal Auditorium, Kansas City, Missouri, United States|
|Win||16-0-2||George Johnson||TKO||2 (10)||07/04/1966||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States||Johnson was knocked down in the 2nd round.|
|Draw||15-0-2||Tony Alongi||PTS||10||04/03/1966||Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United States||Alongi was knocked down in the 7th. The judge Artie Aidala scored the bout 5-5 in rounds, but favored Quarry in supplemental scoring.|
|Win||15-0-1||Prentice Snipes||KO||5 (10)||17/02/1966||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States||Snipes was knocked down twice in the 5th round.|
|Win||14-0-1||Eddie Land||UD||8||03/02/1966||Convention Center, Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Win||13-0-1||Roy Crear||TKO||3 (10)||23/12/1965||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States|
|Draw||12-0-1||Tony Doyle||PTS||10||11/11/1965||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States||Doyle was knocked down in the 4th round for a five count.|
|Win||12–0||Roy Crear||TKO||3 (10)||02/11/1965||Municipal Auditorium, San Antonio, Texas, United States||Quarry was knocked down in the 2nd round. Los Angeles Times.|
|Win||11–0||Al Carter||TKO||6 (8)||28/10/1965||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States||Carter was knocked down in the 6th round.|
|Win||10–0||Milton Manley||KO||1 (8)||13/10/1965||Memorial Hall, Kansas City, Kansas, United States|
|Win||9–0||Ray Junior Ellis||KO||3 (6)||23/09/1965||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States|
|Win||8–0||John Henry Jackson||PTS||8||09/08/1965||Memorial Hall, Kansas City, Kansas, United States|
|Win||7–0||JP Spencer||TKO||4 (8)||02/08/1965||Hacienda Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Win||6–0||Ray Junior Ellis||UD||6||29/07/1965||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States|
|Win||5–0||Willie Davis||KO||3 (6)||16/07/1965||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States|
|Win||4–0||Dave Centi||UD||6||24/06/1965||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States||Centi was knocked down in the 2nd round.|
|Win||3–0||Lance Holmberg||PTS||6||17/06/1965||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States|
|Win||2–0||John Henry Jackson||KO||4 (6)||03/06/1965||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States|
|Win||1–0||Gene Hamilton||PTS||4||07/05/1965||Memorial Coliseum, Los Angeles, California, United States||Pro debut for Quarry.|
- Boyle, Robert H., "Too Many Punches, Too Little Concern", Sports Illustrated, April 11, 1983. Article dated 1983-04-11, retrieved 2009-02-13.