Portland's Hall of Fame boxer turns 150

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Associated Press

Posted on December 17, 2012 at 9:51 AM

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Even the most avid Oregon boxing fans might be unaware that one of the greatest middleweights is buried at Mount Calvary Cemetery in Portland.

And Saturday marked the 150th anniversary of his birth.

Hall of Famer Jack "Nonpareil" Dempsey was born in Ireland and moved to New York as a child.

He claimed the middleweight championship in 1884 and held it until fellow Hall of Famer Bob Fitzsimmons knocked him out in 1891.

Dempsey moved to Portland after falling for an Oregon woman. He lost his final fight in 1895 while weakened with tuberculosis. He died from it later that year.

Years after, a young heavyweight named William Dempsey paid tribute by fighting under the name Jack Dempsey. That Jack Dempsey eventually overshadowed the 19th century star.

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