Originally Posted by AlFrancis
this is a good story
WHEN they buried Lionel Rose this week it prompted a memory in my cousin, Steven Carter, who was working on the television show This Is Your Life back in 1977 when Rose was featured. After filming in Epping was completed, there was a party held for the guest of honour at the Texas Tavern, Kings Cross. So it was that just after midnight, the three famous boxers, Lionel Rose, Fighting Harada and Johnny Famechon get out of a cab to walk to the bar when a drunken lout, who was not alone, flicks his lit cigarette butt into the chest of Lionel Rose and starts to unleash vicious racial epithets. Fighting Harada speaks very little English but knows ugliness when he sees it, and instantly moves to cut off the drunk, even as the bum now tries to shirt-front Lionel. The great Aboriginal boxer, who could have dropped the punk without blinking, restrains himself and moves the other way, still pursued by the drunk. This time Johnny Famechon, bless him, uses his trademark speed, grabs the drunken lout by the collar and pulls back his left hook, locked and loaded on a hair trigger, waiting … just waiting … for the drunk's next racial slur. (Altogether after me: Please ..? Just one ..?) The crowd closes as Fighting Harada moves to stand by Famechon, shoulder to shoulder, as Lionel keeps walking. A dignified man, Lionel has been in this bad movie before too many times, wants no part of it, and knows that his own mates have his back. Luckily at this point one of the drunken lout's slightly less drunken mates steps forward and drags him away into the night, with his babbles of "I could have taken all three of them" soon fading into Kings Cross night. Situation sorted, Lionel is on the steps of The Texas Tavern waiting for them as they catch up. "Thanks," he says, and they all go inside. A champion man. And I am reliably informed that next year will be the first time in more than four decades that Fighting Harada won't send Lionel a birthday card. Another champion. As is Johnny Famechon.