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On This Day In Boxing History!

2012: Johnny "Mi Vida Loca" Tapia Passes!

Johnny Tapia

Birth Name: John Lee Tapia

Born: February 13th, 1967

Birth Place: Albuquerque, New Mexico

Residence: Albuquerque, New Mexico

Amateur Record: 101-21, 65Ko’s

1983: National Golden Gloves Light Flyweight Champion

1984: United States Olympic Western Trials Light Flyweight Finalist.

1985: National Golden Gloves Flyweight Champion.

Pro-Debut: March 28th, 1988

Alias: "Mi Vida Loca"

Stance: Orthodox

Height: 5’6″ 

Reach: 65″ 

Division: Super Flyweight

Bouts: 66

Rounds: 473

Ko’s: 45.45%

Career: 1988-2011

Died: Age 45, May 27th, 2012


WBO Super Flyweight Champion

1994 Oct 12 – 1998 Dec 5

IBF Super Flyweight Champion

1997 Jul 8 – 1998 Dec 5

WBA Bantamweight Champion

1998 Dec 5 – 1999

WBO Bantamweight Champion

2000 Jan 8 – 2000 Sep

IBF Featherweight Champion

2002 Apr 27 – 2002 Sep 30


Inducted International Boxing Hall of Fame: 2017



*Jerry Padilla, Tapia's father, vanished before he was born. Tapia thought he was dead, but he turned up in 2010 after being released from a federal penitentiary. DNA tests confirmed his paternity.

*Virginia Tapia, Johnny's mother, was murdered when he was eight years old.

*Tapia's uncles made him fight older boys in matches. They would bet on him to win and beat him if he lost.

*Tapia was raised by his maternal grandparents.

*Miguel Tapia, Johnny's grandfather, was an amateur boxing champion and taught him how to box.

*Tapia struggled with drugs and alcohol for many years. He was declared clinically dead five times as a result of drug overdoses.

*Tapia attempted suicide several times.

*Johnny and Teresa Tapia were married in 1994. They had three children.

*HBO aired a documentary about his life and career, simply called Tapia, in 2013. It included interviews with Johnny and Teresa and rare footage of his rise to stardom.

*On May 27, 2013, Tapia was found dead inside his home in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The autopsy report stated that Tapia's death was the result of heart problems and the onset of Hepatitis C, likely from the many tattoos he had. Teresa Tapia shared the autopsy report with reporters at a press conference on August 21, 2013, and said she was doing it to dispel the myth that her husband died after using illegal drugs. "This shows that he did not die of a drug overdose," she said. "It doesn't make the pain go away, but I felt I needed to say that." Investigators found one Hydrocodone tablet, a painkiller, on the floor beside his body. They said there were no indications of an overdose or alcohol use, but that the 45-year-old former fighter likely developed medical complications from past illegal drug use. Teresa Tapia said her husband was taking medication for his bipolar disorder and for his high blood pressure.

*At the beginning of his 2006 autobiography, Mi Vida Loca: The Crazy Life of Johnny Tapia, Tapia wrote: "My name is Johnny Lee Tapia. I was born on Friday the 13th. A Friday in February of 1967. To this day I don't know if that makes me lucky or unlucky. When I was eight I saw my mother murdered. I never knew my father. He was murdered before I was born. I was raised as a pit bull. Raised to fight to the death. Four times I was declared dead. Four times they wanted to pull life support. And many more times I came close to dying. But I have lived and had it all. I have been wealthy and lost it all. I have been famous and infamous. Five times I was world champion. You tell me. Am I lucky or unlucky?"


May 27th

1905: Young Corbett III born

1929: Andre Routis KO3 Buster Brown

1931: Jimmy McLarnin W10 Billy Petrolle

1951: John Conteh born.

1956: Cornelius Boza Edwards born.

1960: Benny Paret W15 Don Jordan

1978: Carlos Palomino W15 Armando Muniz

1983: Marvin Hagler KO4 Wilford Scypion

1984: Eusebio Pedroza W15 Angel Levy Mayor

1989: Virgil Hill KO7 Joe Lasisi

1994: Roy Jones Jr. KO2 Thomas Tate

Rafael Ruelas KO3 Mike Evgen

Oscar De La Hoya KO3 Giorgio Campanella

1995: Henry Maske W12 Graciano Rocchigiani

Frankie Liles KO6 Frederic Seillier

Jorge Castro KO12 Anthony Andrews

Eloy Rojas W12 Kyun-Yung Park

Daorung MP Petroleum D12 Lakhin CP Gym

2004: Mahyar Monshipour KO8 Salim Medjkkoune

2006: Jhonny Gonzalez WSD12 Fernando Montiel                 

Serhiy Dzinziruk W12 Sebastian Andres Lujan

Daniel Ponce De Leon KO2 Gerson Guerrero

Terri Blair TKO9 Sumya Anani

2009: Anthony Mundine WSD12 Daniel Geale 

2011: Christina Hammer W10Maria Lindberg

2013: Johnny Tapia Passes!

2017: Errol Spence Jr KO11 Kell Brook  

George Groves TKO6 Fedor Chudinov

Hanna Gabriels W10 Natasha Spence

Jose Argumedo TKO8 Gabriel Mendoza

Kenia Enriquez TKO3 Maria Salinas


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