Vernon Forrest

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Vernon Forrest
Statistics
Nickname(s) The Viper
Rated at
Height 6 ft 0 in (183 cm)
Reach 73 in (185 cm)
Nationality American
Born (1971-02-12)February 12, 1971
Augusta, Georgia, U.S.
Died July 25, 2009(2009-07-25) (aged 38)
Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.
Stance Orthodox
Boxing record
Total fights 45
Wins 41
Wins by KO 29
Losses 3
No contests 1

Vernon Forrest (February 12, 1971 – July 25, 2009) was an American professional boxer who competed from 1992 to 2008.[1] He was a four-time, two-weight world champion, having held the IBF welterweight title in 2001; the unified WBC, Ring magazine, and lineal welterweight titles from 2002 to 2003;[2] and the WBC super welterweight title twice, from 2007 to 2009.

In 2009, Forrest was murdered after he was robbed at a gas station in the Mechanicsville neighborhood of Atlanta, Georgia.

Early years and amateur career[edit]

A native of Augusta, Georgia, Forrest began boxing at the age of 9. After compiling an impressive 225-16 record as an amateur, he became the 1992 US junior welterweight champion, and won silver at the 1991 World Amateur Boxing Championships, losing in the finals to Kostya Tszyu.[3] Forrest was the first in his family to graduate from high school receiving his diploma from Marquette Senior High School in Marquette, Michigan. Staying in Marquette, Forrest was on scholarship to Northern Michigan University where he majored in business administration through the U.S. Olympic Education Center. Forrest continued to train with the US National Team under head coach Al Mitchell.[3]

He was a member of the 1992 US Olympic Team during the Summer Olympics in Barcelona, Spain.[3] He earned his Olympic position by beating Shane Mosley in the trials. After that fight, Forrest was the gold medal favorite heading in to the tournament. He would have to fight Cuban fighter Hector Vinent, a gold medallist, before reaching that goal. However, he was stricken with food poisoning a day before his first round bout and was beaten by Peter Richardson, who he'd previously defeated in a fight at the 1991 World Amateur Boxing Championships en route to winning the silver medal. He returned home to Augusta, then moved to Las Vegas, and made his professional debut on November 25, 1992.

Professional career[edit]

In his professional debut in November 1992, Forrest defeated Charles Hawkins. Through 1996, Forrest stopped 13 out of 15 opponents. Five were stopped in the first round.

As the years went by Forrest won a few minor title belts. In the year 2000 Forrest finally got his chance to fight for a major title belt against Raul Frank (for the IBF welterweight title). Unfortunately for Forrest however, a cut caused by an accidental head butt ended the bout in round three and the fight was ruled a no contest.

IBF champion[edit]

Forrest met Frank again in a rematch at Madison Square Garden on May 15, 2001, on a Félix Trinidad undercard. Forrest dominated his opponent and won the fight by a unanimous decision to claim his first major professional boxing title.

Forrest vs Mosley I & II[edit]

In 2001, Forrest fought the WBC and lineal welterweight champion, Shane Mosley.[4] Many considered Mosley to be the best fighter in the world, and he was the betting favorite to win the fight. Despite being the favorite, Mosley was dominated in this bout. Both fighters initially started strong, landing hard blows, but in the second round Forrest had Mosley hurt early and knocked him down for the first time in his career. A series of strong punches would put him down yet again later in the round. With his dominant performance, Forrest was also awarded the Ring Magazine welterweight title.

Six months later, Forrest once again squared off against Mosley in a rematch. Despite a stronger performance from Mosley, Forrest won a clear cut decision, using his jab more effectively and through superior ring generalship. Forrest was now considered by many to be one of the top fighters in the world.

Setbacks against Mayorga[edit]

In January 2003, Forrest fought the WBA welterweight champion, Ricardo Mayorga. Mayorga was a mostly unknown fringe contender from Nicaragua and few gave him a chance to win against the significantly bigger and stronger Forrest. Mayorga shocked the world when he easily dominated Forrest, dropping him once in the first round and again in the third round. The referee would call off the fight after the second knockdown, as Forrest was visibly dazed and unable to get his footing.

Forrest would rematch Mayorga six months later, losing again, this time by a majority decision. The bout was close and competitive, with Mayorga mostly chasing Forrest around the ring while Forrest was content to fight from the outside.

On the comeback trail[edit]

Forrest took two years off from fighting because of injuries; Forrest had complete reconstructive surgery on his left arm. He had three surgeries two on his shoulder to repair a torn rotator cuff and one on his left elbow to repair torn cartilage and nerve damages.

In his first fight since losing twice to Mayorga, Forrest knocked out Sergio Rios in two rounds. After the fight against Rios, Forrest stopped Elco Garcia in the tenth round.

Forrest won a controversial ten round unanimous decision over Ike Quartey on August 5, 2006, at Madison Square Theatre, New York City. The judges at ringside scored the fight, 95-94, 95-94, and 96-93.[5]

On July 28, 2007, Forrest won a unanimous decision against Carlos Baldomir in Tacoma, Washington, frequently firing off heavy right blows at Baldomir. After twelve rounds, Forrest won a lopsided 118-109, 116-111, 118-109 decision to take the vacant WBC light middleweight title.

On December 1, 2007, at Foxwoods Resort Casino, he successfully defended his light middleweight title against Italian Michele Piccirillo, scoring an eleventh-round TKO.

Losing the title[edit]

On June 7, 2008, Forrest lost his title to The Contender winner Sergio Mora via a 12-round majority decision. In the build-up to the fight, Forrest referred to Mora as "the pretender" and threatened to send him "out on a stretcher".[6] However, Mora succeeded in pulling off the upset victory.[7] The final scores were 114-114, 115-113 and 116-112 in favor of Mora.[8][9]

Reclaiming the title[edit]

Forrest reclaimed his WBC 154-pound title on September 14, 2008, against Sergio Mora via unanimous decision, the judges scores were 118-109, 117-110, and 119-110.[10]

Professional boxing record[edit]

Professional record summary
45 fights 41 wins 3 losses
By knockout 29 1
By decision 12 2
No contests 1
No. Result Record Opponent Type Round, time Date Location Notes
45 Win 41–3 (1) United States Sergio Mora UD 12 Sep 13, 2008 United States MGM Grand Garden Arena, Paradise, Nevada, U.S. Won WBC super welterweight title
44 Loss 40–3 (1) United States Sergio Mora MD 12 Jun 7, 2008 United States Mohegan Sun Arena, Montville, Connecticut, U.S. Lost WBC super welterweight title
43 Win 40–2 (1) Italy Michele Piccirillo TKO 11 (12), 2:21 Dec 1, 2007 United States Foxwoods Resort Casino, Ledyard, Connecticut, U.S. Retained WBC super welterweight title
42 Win 39–2 (1) Argentina Carlos Baldomir UD 12 Jul 28, 2007 United States Emerald Queen Casino, Tacoma, Washington, U.S. Won vacant WBC super welterweight title
41 Win 38–2 (1) Ghana Ike Quartey UD 10 Aug 5, 2006 United States Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, U.S.
40 Win 37–2 (1) Mexico Elco Garcia TKO 10 (10), 1:58 Oct 21, 2005 United States Pechanga Resort and Casino, Temecula, California, U.S.
39 Win 36–2 (1) Mexico Sergio Rios TKO 2 (10), 2:43 Jul 16, 2005 United States MGM Grand Garden Arena, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.
38 Loss 35–2 (1) Nicaragua Ricardo Mayorga MD 12 Jul 12, 2003 United States The Orleans, Paradise, Nevada, U.S. For WBA (Super), WBC, The Ring, and lineal welterweight titles
37 Loss 35–1 (1) Nicaragua Ricardo Mayorga TKO 3 (12), 2:06 Jan 25, 2003 United States Pechanga Resort and Casino, Temecula, California, U.S. Lost WBC, The Ring, and lineal welterweight titles;
For WBA (Super) welterweight title
36 Win 35–0 (1) United States Shane Mosley UD 12 Jul 20, 2002 United States Conseco Fieldhouse, Indianapolis, Indiana, U.S. Retained WBC, The Ring, and lineal welterweight titles
35 Win 34–0 (1) United States Shane Mosley UD 12 Jan 26, 2002 United States The Theater at Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, U.S. Won WBC, lineal, and vacant The Ring welterweight titles
34 Win 33–0 (1) Mexico Edgar Ruiz KO 4 (10), 2:03 Aug 24, 2001 United States Mountaineer Casino Racetrack and Resort, Chester, West Virginia, U.S.
33 Win 32–0 (1) Guyana Raul Frank UD 12 May 12, 2001 United States Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, U.S. Won vacant IBF welterweight title
32 NC 31–0 (1) Guyana Raul Frank NC 3 (12), 1:45 Aug 26, 2000 United States Mandalay Bay Events Center, Paradise, Nevada, U.S. For vacant IBF welterweight title;
NC after Frank sustained a cut from an accidental head clash
31 Win 31–0 United States Vince Phillips UD 12 Jan 22, 2000 United States Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Paradise, Nevada, U.S. Retained NABF welterweight title
30 Win 30–0 Panama Santiago Samaniego TKO 7 (12), 1:21 Aug 27, 1999 United States Bell Auditorium, Augusta, Georgia, U.S. Retained NABF welterweight title
29 Win 29–0 United States Ed Goins KO 4 (10), 2:57 Jun 19, 1999 United States Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, U.S.
28 Win 28–0 United States Steve Martinez TKO 1 (12), 1:56 Apr 16, 1999 United States Grand Casino, Tunica, Mississippi, U.S. Retained NABF welterweight title
27 Win 27–0 United States Mark Fernandez TKO 2 (8), 1:48 Feb 20, 1999 United States Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, U.S.
26 Win 26–0 United States Ed Griffin TKO 2 (12), 2:38 Dec 12, 1998 United States Etess Arena, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S. Retained NABF welterweight title
25 Win 25–0 United Kingdom Adrian Stone TKO 11 (12), 1:27 Aug 18, 1998 United States Grand Casino, Tunica, Mississippi, U.S. Won vacant NABF welterweight title
24 Win 24–0 Mexico Gilberto Flores TKO 2 Mar 28, 1998 United States Boardwalk Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.
23 Win 23–0 United States Ray Oliveira UD 12 Nov 7, 1997 United States Bally's Las Vegas, Paradise, Nevada, U.S. Won vacant WBC Continental Americas welterweight title
22 Win 22–0 United States Jaime Lerma UD 10 Aug 19, 1997 United States Convention Center, Austin, Texas, U.S.
21 Win 21–0 Dominican Republic Pedro Saiz RTD 6 (10), 3:00 May 5, 1997 United States Broadway by the Bay Theater, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.
20 Win 20–0 Brazil Francisco De Assis TKO 1 (10) Apr 5, 1997 United States Bally's Park Place, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.
19 Win 19–0 United States Mike Rios TKO 1 Jan 24, 1997 United States Convention Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.
18 Win 18–0 United States Chris Slaughter KO 1 (10) May 10, 1996 United States Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, U.S.
17 Win 17–0 Mexico Isaac Cruz KO 8 (10), 2:05 Apr 9, 1996 United States Fantasy Springs Resort Casino, Indio, California, U.S.
16 Win 16–0 Cuba Tony Ortiz KO 1 (8), 1:29 Feb 22, 1996 United States Civic Center, Hammond, Indiana, U.S.
15 Win 15–0 United States Marlon Thomas UD 12 Nov 28, 1995 United States Bell Auditorium, Augusta, Georgia, U.S. Won vacant IBC light welterweight title
14 Win 14–0 Mexico Jesus Mayorga TKO 1 (10) Nov 3, 1995 United States The Aladdin, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.
13 Win 13–0 United States Roberto Chala TKO 3 (6) Sep 12, 1995 United States Biloxi, Mississippi, U.S.
12 Win 12–0 Mexico Julian Romero TKO 2 (10) Jul 15, 1995 United States Caesars Tahoe, Stateline, Nevada, U.S.
11 Win 11–0 United States Dezi Ford TKO 4, 1:53 Apr 18, 1995 United States The Aladdin, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.
10 Win 10–0 United States Genaro Andujar KO 1 Mar 4, 1995 United States The Roxy, Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.
9 Win 9–0 Puerto Rico Carlos Cartagena UD 6 Jan 25, 1995 United States Etess Arena, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.
8 Win 8–0 United States Randy Archuleta KO 1 (6) Nov 5, 1994 United States Caesars Tahoe, Stateline, Nevada, U.S.
7 Win 7–0 United States Elvesto Mills UD 6 Feb 5, 1994 United States The Aladdin, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.
6 Win 6–0 United States Lamont Johnson TKO 1 Dec 18, 1993 United States Caesars Tahoe, Stateline, Nevada, U.S.
5 Win 5–0 United States Eldon Sneeze TKO 1 Oct 20, 1993 United States Casino Magic, Bay St. Louis, Mississippi, U.S.
4 Win 4–0 United States Theodore Carradine TKO 3 (6), 2:08 Jul 17, 1993 United States Caesars Palace, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.
3 Win 3–0 United States Augustine Renteria TKO 2 (6), 1:40 Jun 7, 1993 United States Thomas & Mack Center, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.
2 Win 2–0 United States Ray Garcia TKO 1 (4), 2:35 Jan 30, 1993 United States Riviera, Winchester, Nevada, U.S.
1 Win 1–0 United States Charles Hawkins TKO 1 (4), 1:29 Nov 25, 1992 United States Riviera, Winchester, Nevada, U.S. Professional debut

Titles in boxing[edit]

Amateur titles
Previous:
Stevie Johnston
United States light welterweight champion
1991
Next:
Shane Mosley
Regional titles
Vacant
Title last held by
Edgar Ruiz
WBC Continental Americas welterweight champion
November 7, 1997 – August 1998
Vacated
Vacant
Title next held by
Jorge Vaca
Vacant
Title last held by
Derrell Coley
NABF welterweight champion
August 18, 1998 – August 2000
Vacated
Vacant
Title next held by
Danny Perez Ramírez
Minor world titles
Vacant
Title last held by
Corey Johnson
IBC light welterweight champion
November 28, 1995 – February 1996
Vacated
Vacant
Title next held by
Søren Fjordback Søndergaard
Major world titles
Vacant
Title last held by
Félix Trinidad
IBF welterweight champion
May 12, 2001 – December 2001
Stripped
Vacant
Title next held by
Michele Piccirillo
Preceded by
Shane Mosley
WBC welterweight champion
January 26, 2002 – January 25, 2003
Succeeded by
Ricardo Mayorga
Vacant
Title last held by
Marlon Starling
The Ring welterweight champion
January 26, 2002 – January 25, 2003
Preceded by
Shane Mosley
Lineal welterweight champion
January 26, 2002 – January 25, 2003
Vacant
Title last held by
Floyd Mayweather Jr.
WBC super welterweight champion
July 28, 2007 – June 7, 2008
Succeeded by
Sergio Mora
Preceded by
Sergio Mora
WBC super welterweight champion
September 14, 2008 – May 21, 2009
Stripped
Succeeded by
Sergio Martínez
promoted from interim status

Charity work[edit]

Forrest was involved directly with the creation of the Not for Profit Destiny's Child, a group home that assists people with developmental, emotional, and psychological disabilities and needs.[11] Forrest was also involved directly with helping the clients by organizing Destiny's Child's activities.[12]

Murder[edit]

At about 11:00 pm EDT on July 25, 2009, Forrest stopped at a gas station in the Atlanta neighborhood of Mechanicsville.[13] With him was his 11-year-old godson. As the boy went inside the gas station, Forrest went to the back of his car to add air to a low tire. As this occurred, a man robbed him at gunpoint and fled. Forrest, who was armed, went after the man and shots were exchanged. After a short distance, Forrest gave up the chase and began talking to a second man. It was this man that shot Forrest seven to eight times in the back. According to police, the shooter and a second person left the scene in a red Pontiac.[14] Forrest was pronounced dead at the scene and the death was ruled a homicide. Atlanta Police would arrest and later charge 25-year-old Jquante Crews, 20-year-old Demario Ware and 30-year-old Charman Sinkfield for his murder. It is believed that Sinkfield was the shooter, Ware was the robber, and Crews was the driver.[15] Sinkfield is slated to face trial for Capital Murder and if convicted could receive a death penalty. Crews and Ware are serving life sentences. (Georgia Department of Corrections)

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Vernon Forrest Biography and Statistics
  2. ^ "The Lineal Welterweight Champs". The Cyber Boxing Zone Encyclopedia. 
  3. ^ a b c HBO: Fighters Bio; VERNON FORREST
  4. ^ "The Lineal Welterweight Champs". The Cyber Boxing Zone Encyclopedia. 
  5. ^ http://sports.espn.go.com/sports/boxing/news/story?id=2541145 | Forrest wins unanimous -- and controversial -- decision
  6. ^ ESPN – Mora in search of respect against Forrest – Boxing
  7. ^ Staff Writer (2008-06-07). "'Contender' Mora shocks Forrest for WBC superwelter belt". Agence France-Presse. Retrieved 2009-07-30. 
  8. ^ 411mania.com: Sports – Mora Upsets Forrest – Williams Gains Revenge
  9. ^ "Pavlik retains middleweight titles, Mora beats Forrest". Reuters. June 8, 2008. 
  10. ^ ap.google.com, Forrest batters Mora, recaptures 154-pound crown Archived September 19, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.
  11. ^ "Destiny's Child, Inc Main Webpage". Destiny's Child, Inc. Retrieved July 30, 2009. 
  12. ^ McLaughlin, Eliott (July 29, 2009). "Friends on killed boxer". CNN. Retrieved July 30, 2009. 
  13. ^ Facey-Palmer, Erika; J. Leslie (2009-07-26). "Boxing Pro Vernon Forrest Murdered in Atlanta". WXIA-TV. Retrieved 2009-07-26. 
  14. ^ Hummer, Steve (2009-07-26). "Police: Killer shot boxer Vernon Forrest in back". Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Retrieved 2009-07-26. 
  15. ^ Garner, Marcus K. (2009-08-25). "How police cracked the Vernon Forrest case". Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Retrieved 2009-08-26. 

External links[edit]