MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. --
Though the All-Marine boxing team disbanded
in 2012, former Marines gave their all to the sport. Saturday, they made
history as the first inductees into the Marine Corps’ Boxing Hall of Fame.
Goettge Memorial Field House hosted the first ever All-Marine boxing HOF
induction and banquet on Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune Saturday.
"The purpose of today was to recognize the all Marine boxers, coaches and
support personnel who dedicated their entire lives to this team because they
have also dedicated themselves to our Corps," said Lt. Gen. Ronald L.
Bailey, Deputy Commandant of Plans, Polices and Operations. "They were not
only boxers, they were United States Marines."
Nearly 50 boxers represent the first class of inductees and another 25 were
"Not everybody makes the All-Marine teams; it requires a tremendous amount
of self-discipline, dedication and commitment," said Bailey. "They
showed the commitment to training, to the profession and showed what it’s like
to continue being at the top of your game."
Olympic gold medalist and former Heavyweight champion, Leon Spinks, and Jamel
Herring, Olympian and current undefeated pro boxer, highlighted the inductee
class of 2016.
Emotions ran high as each new Hall of Famer heard his or her name called up to
be honored in front of their boxing peers, some of whom hadn’t seen each other
for decades. Each inductee received their Hall of Fame ring and medal from
leaders from across Marine Corps Installations – East and were applauded by the
many families and friends in attendance.
"I hope people understand that the All-Marine boxing team was a team of
pride," said Bailey. "I’ve run into coaches, firemen, businessmen
here today and it all comes from hard work, dedication and the respect that
they’ve gained from being on this team."