Local boxer Duran dies following a stroke
Published: Wednesday, Apr. 27, 2011 - 12:00 am | Page 2C
Richard "Bam Bam" Duran, a Sacramento boxer who had the rare distinction of fighting for world championships twice in a year, died Tuesday in a local hospital following a stroke.
Family members said Duran, 44, was on life support after being stricken a week ago.
Under trainer Don Conley, Duran was an outstanding amateur fighter before compiling a professional record of 27-3 with 13 knockouts, 10 in the first round. All three of his defeats, two in title bouts, occurred within his last four fights, leading to his retirement in 1994.
Duran's first title fight was April 17, 1993, in Sacramento, a 12-round unanimous decision loss to 1988 Olympic gold medalist Kennedy McKinney for the International Boxing Federation super-bantamweight crown.
That Duran nearly knocked down McKinney at one point led to another chance at a 122-pound championship.
On April 9, 1994, in Reno, he challenged Tracy Harris Patterson, the adopted son of former heavyweight champion Floyd Patterson, for the World Boxing Council title but also lost by unanimous decision.
Three months later, Duran fought for the last time, then encountered personal setbacks. In 2000, he pleaded no contest to involuntary manslaughter following a bar fight and was sentenced to one year in jail with probation, according to court records.
In recent years, he began to turn his life around and trained amateur boxers.
"Richard was a terrific, terrific fighter, but we agreed that he probably stayed in the amateurs too long before turning pro," said promoter Don Chargin, who has been instrumental in developing several top area fighters.
Veteran businessman Jimmy Anderson, who was Duran's manager, said, "My favorite memory of Richard was knocking out an opponent who tried to be too friendly and touch gloves with him before the start of a fight."
Daughter Sirena Duran, a Colorado resident and one of his seven children, said services are pending.
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