John “Irish Johnny” Copeland

John “Irish Johnny” Copeland

Birth
Joplin, Jasper County, Missouri, USA
Death 19 Mar 2004 (aged 58)
Joplin, Jasper County, Missouri, USA
Burial Joplin, Jasper County, Missouri, USA
Memorial ID 8548584 · View Source
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Championship Boxer. He was a member of the Missouri and Joplin Sports Hall of Fame. His professional boxing career spanned over 10 years. In 1963, he was named Kansas City Golden Gloves Champion (novice). In 1964 and 1965, he was the Kansas City Golden Gloves Champion. In 1966, Johnny was unable to fight due to a broken jaw in his semi-final victory over Maurice Williams. Richard Gillis won the Kansas City Golden Gloves Championship in 1966, then went on to the national championship, but Johnny came back to knock him out in 1967 to win the Kansas City Golden Gloves tournament. Johnny never lost at the Kansas City Golden Gloves tournaments. He had 33 professional victories with 26 knockouts. During his professional career, Johnny ranked as high as fourth (lightweight) by "Ring Magazine" in the mid 1970's. He was never one to turn down a fight, Johnny was quoted as saying, "I'll fight anyone, anywhere, anytime for a Big Mac." His fights were usually the "main event," which meant that his foe was always a highly ranked fighter. Johnny fought such notables as Alfredo Escalero in San Juan, Puerto Rico, and world champion, Antonio Cervantes in Columbia, South America, as well as two memorable bouts with Sammy Ayala and a tough match with World Champion, Aaron Pryor. From Copenhagen to San Antonio, Texas, Johnny flew all over the world, always representing his home town of Joplin, Missouri with pride.


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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Originally Created by: Jody
  • Added: 23 Mar 2004
  • Find a Grave Memorial 8548584
  • Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for John “Irish Johnny” Copeland (24 Nov 1945–19 Mar 2004), Find a Grave Memorial no. 8548584, citing Ozark Memorial Park Cemetery, Joplin, Jasper County, Missouri, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .