Friday, February 24, 2006

The Champ

Kingsport native and former boxing champion Eddie Roberts turned 60 on February 18. His daughter Carol Roller threw a party for him at the Civic Auditorium, site of one of his most famous matches, a 1979 bout against ninth-ranked middleweight Willie Taylor. Eddie lost a split decision, one of only five losses in his professional career. He was 14-5-1 in his pro career. Prior to that he was five time East Tennessee Golden Gloves champ and three time Southern Golden Gloves champion. Eddie was never knocked out in his career.

I attended his party and took these photos.

Eddie seemed most proud of his granddaughter Meredith Roller’s arm wrestling prowess. He had her tell me about her matches at school. First she beat all the girls. Then she beat all the boys. The boys were a bit embarrassed and wanted her to again left-handed. She beat them all left-handed.


At 10:08 PM, Blogger Maria Osborne Perry said...

Oh my gosh, my big brother! Thanks for the article about Eddie! He really has proved that despite humble beginnings, one can accomplish big things with determination and heart.


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