An organization based in the east Bronx that helps ‘down on their luck’ retired boxers will be holding a gala fundraiser featuring big names in the sport.
Ring 10’s Veterans Boxing Foundation of New York is hosting its 8th Annual Fundraiser at Marina del Rey with a host of famous boxers scheduled to attend on Sunday, September 23 at Marina del Rey.
Special guest is ‘Hands of Stone’ Durán, who fought as a middleweight and is considered one of the best boxers of all time by sports journalists, according to organizers.
The keynote speaker will be NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill, said event coordinators.
The Panamanian boxer is a special guest due to the work of the NYPD fraternal organization Global Alliance of Hispanic Law Enforcement Professionals, which was able to connect to Panamanian law enforcement officials who knew Durán, said Sargent Johnny Nunez, GAHLEP founder.
“I mentioned Ring 10 and sure enough when he got back to Panama he spoke to Roberto,” said Nunez.
The event features a tremendous gathering of boxing talent, including five-time champion Iran ‘The Blade’ Barkley, ‘Gentleman’ Gerry Cooney, Vinny Pazienza, Frank Tate and many others, including other celebrities like baseball great Dwight ‘Doc’ Gooden and Actor Danny Aliello, according to organizers.
Tickets to the 8th annual fundraiser cost $135 each and include brunch, cocktail hour, dinner, dessert, top shelf open bar and a silent auction featuring ‘one of a kind’ memorial.
Ring 10 has been active in helping former boxers who are behind on their rent or utility bills, or who need medicine, clothing and food, said Michael Bernard, Ring 10 vice-president.
“This is the organization’s big annual fundraiser,” said Bernard, adding that Ring 10’s mission is to “Try to assist former boxers who have health issues or who are living in poverty.”
In some cases, said Bernard, this could mean a food card to a supermarket, or it could mean helping to find housing or medical services for an ex-boxer, who may be a former champion or an average ex-boxer.
“We have boxers who are in homeless shelters both in Philadelphia and New York,” said Bernard, adding he estimates the organization to have 60 members and helps 18 boxers a month.
Landing a donated appearance by Roberto Durán was a big deal for Ring 10, which meets monthly and only charges $25 a year for dues.
He said that had it not been for the support of Nunez and a fight fan in the NYPD who wishes to remain anonymous, Ring 10 would never have been able to land Durán, who has appearance fees that are astronomical for a grassroots organization.
“He is considered one of the top ten fighters of all time, and him coming here is really helping us,” said Bernard, who hopes Durán will draw in boxing fans and who added that Ring 10 wished to thank Esteban Blis, Durán’s friend, who was able to help bring the boxer to the borough.
For more information or to purchase tickets, call Ring 10’s president and founder Matt Farrango at (631) 948-6028 or Bernard at (914) 263-0209.
Tickets are also available at Ring1