JIM HARRYMAN – In his prime, Jim Harryman, once known as the “King of the Street Fighters,” was a three-sport star. In addition to boxing for ten years and playing football for twenty-eight, Harryman was a rugby player for fifteen years. Harryman, a football JC All-American from Compton played pro football in Canada with the Calgary Stampeders. As a boxer, Harryman was rated as one of the top heavyweight prospects in the world, but it was street fighting that he was most famous for. It was quoted in Ring Magazine about Harryman that “He’s three times better in the street than in the ring.
ANDY HEILMAN – During his boxing career in the 1960’s, Andy Heilman was ranked as high as number three in the world middleweight class. Heilman’s two biggest marquee fights were both against former middleweight champion of the world Emile Griffith, once in Oakland and the other time at Madison Square Garden in New York. During his career as a middleweight boxer, Heilman was a fan favorite for his brawling toe-to-toe style. His manager, Jackie McCoy once said about him, “Heilman doesn’t know how to go backwards, only forward.
JOE ORBILLO – Although Wilmington native Joe Orbillo had a boxing career that lasted less than a decade, those who saw him fight never forgot him. Known as a blood and guts crowd favorite, Orbillo was a heavyweight hopeful in the 1960s who fought various top boxers of the day in toe to toe brawls that earned him the respect of all his opponents including championship contenders Jerry Quarry and Eddie Machen. At the conclusion of Orbillo’s boxing career he trained Joe Lewis to title of American Kickboxing Champion.
MANDO RAMOS – A native of Long Beach, Mando Ramos attended Franklin Junior High and Poly High where he was an outstanding athlete in both football and basketball, before setting his sights on boxing. He began pro boxing in 1965. A hard-punching, aggressive fighter, Ramos made Los Angeles his base. There on September 28, 1968, he fought for the world championship, but lost on points to Carlos Teo Cruz. At a rematch the following year, Ramos became the World Lightweight Champion at age 20, becoming the youngest man ever to win the title. He retired from boxing in 1975.
SUGAR RAY ROBINSON – Credited by many informed sports writers as having been “pound for pound, the greatest fighter in the world,” Sugar Ray Robinson was the five-time champion in the middleweight ranks and also took the welterweight title once. His boxing career spanned 26 years and 202 professional bouts, beginning in 1940, after having an undefeated string of 88 amateur fights. Robinson took the welterweight title in 1946 and decked Jake LaMotta to win his first middleweight crown in 1951.