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EMILE GRIFFITH - AUTOGRAPHED SIGNED PHOTOGRAPH - HFSID 288709

Signed copy of a news service photo, showing Griffith punching Benny Paret. Paret won this fight, the second of their three bouts, but Griffith pummeled Paret to death in their third fight after Paret called him a homosexual.

Sale Price $180.00

Reg. $200.00

Condition: fine condition
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EMILE GRIFFITH
Signed copy of a news service photo, showing Griffith punching Benny Paret. Paret won this fight, the second of their three bouts, but Griffith pummeled Paret to death in their third fight after Paret called him a homosexual.
Photograph signed: "Emile Griffith". B/w 9¾x7¾. Shown in the ring with Benny Paret. Captioned in lower margin: "Benny Paret (left) decisioned Emile Griffith to regain the middleweight title." Emile Griffith (1938-2013), the first world champion to come from the US Virgin Islands, won the welterweight boxing title from Benny "the Kid" Paret in a 13th Round knockout in April 1961. Six months later, Paret took the title back in a split decision. On March 24, 1962, while at the weigh-in for their third championship fight, Paret called Griffith a "maricon," a derogatory Spanish term for a homosexual. In the twelfth round, Griffith pummeled Paret, unconscious but still standing against the ropes, as he had been instructed to do by his trainer "until the ref breaks you." Paret never regained consciousness, and died 10 days later. Griffith, who later acknowledged being bi-sexual, has always denied that he deliberately tried to injure Paret, but has been plagued by guilt and nightmares ever since.Many observers felt that Griffith, who went on to win and defend the middleweight crown against Dick Tiger and Nino Benvenuto, was never the same fighter after Paret, apparently afraid to hurt his ring opponents too much. He finished with a career pro record of 85 (with 25 KO's)-24-2. Paret's son eventually forgave and embraced Griffith, but Paret's widow went to her grave in 2004 still refusing to do so. As for the public, Griffith has reflected ruefully that many could forgive him for killing a man, but not for loving one. Fine condition.

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