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Glen Cove’s Boxing History

It’s boxing season in Glen Cove, with the annual Golden Gloves tournament that took place on Thursday, March 27, and this city has a rich history with boxing, having produced several notable boxing greats, with more aspiring fighters training at the Glen Cove

Boxing Club. Boxing historian Christopher Shelton recently dug deep into the story of one of the one of our local boxing heroes, Allen “Junebug” Hudson, Jr., whose credits include fighting Muhammad Ali.

 

“I’m proud to tell this story...nobody’s ever really written about this guy,” says Shelton.

 

Shelton’s lengthy, 10,000-word piece,“The Army Boxer Who Knocked-Down Muhammad Ali (1960),” can be viewed on www.ringsideboxingshow.com/SheltonBLOGJunebugHudson.html; the article tells the story of Hudson, from his early life to his time spent in the

Army, from his fighting credits to his career with the Long Island Rail Road. Shelton spoke with a number of folks in the community to get his facts straight, including Junebug’s son, Allen Hudson III, assistant principal at Glen Cove High School, 1976 Olympic lightweight gold medal winner Howard Davis Jr., trainer Tommy Gallagher and Frank Pena of the Glen Cove Boxing Club.

 

“It’s more than a boxing story,” says Shelton. “It is also a military story: one chose to serve, one chose not to.” 

 

The two boxers were both compelled to military service, and while Hudson served, Ali declined.

 

Shelton says that Hudson probably hit Ali harder than anybody else; but when searching Junebug Hudson, the story “ultimately becomes about Ali.” Another problem with researching Junebug is that his first name is often misspelled as “Alan.” 

 

 Junebug, who died in 1996, was a member of the 3rd Army who won the heavyweight gold medal at the 1959 Pan-American games.  

 

“Junebug’s most famous Army bout was his last as an amateur losing to Cassius Clay/Muhammad Ali at the 1960 Olympic trials. During the bout, Junebug became one of only five boxers to knock Clay/Ali to the canvas,” says Shelton. 

 

Shelton says that when Hudson participated in an Olympic-qualifying fight, he switched divisions to help out a friend, a decision that Shelton speculates may have cost him his career. If he hadn’t switched, Shelton says, “he probably would’ve qualified and won.”

 

Though it is unfortunate that Hudson died before having a chance to tell his own story, Shelton is happy to be able to document the information he obtained.

 

“While Ali is the major supporting character, it is meant to be Junebug’s story,” he says.


News

If Heather Lehrman is not yet a familiar face to local pet owners, her name is likely to soon become a household name to dog lovers and families with young children, as her children’s book, Bullied at the Dog Park, was released this week. The book is based on a real-life incident with her own dog, Herbie, and fans will have a chance to meet her and Herbie at a book signing at Petco in Glen Cove on Saturday, Oct. 25.

 

“I wanted to help get the message out in my own way about the effects of bullying,” says Lehrman, a resident of Great Neck. “This book teaches children valuable lessons about treating all dogs (and people) with respect, and the importance of simple kindness.”

It was Dec. 31, 1999, the last day of the 20th century, and Florence Dolling was preparing an elaborate Thai dinner for a New Year’s Eve celebration in her home in Glen Cove when the phone rang.  It was her doctor reporting that, “Yes, it was breast cancer.” She kept on cooking, attempting to retain as much normalcy as she could muster, knowing that, with the new millennium, there would certainly come change.

 

“I wore a red strapless bustier for the party because I thought I was saying goodbye to the ‘girls’,” she says. “My husband, my sense of humor, and my friends, helped me get through that night,” she recalls.


Sports

On Tuesday, Oct. 7, the Glen Cove Finley Middle School opened their football season with a home game against Thompson Middle School. The game opened with the Glen Cove offense going on a nice drive, which saw quarterback Mike Vaughan score on a 30-yard touchdown run. 

Six North Shore High School athletes competed in the 2014 JCC Maccabi Games and led the New York Delegation to victory, winning gold. The students included Jacob Abramowitz, Brett Bennett, Drew Jacklin, Ben Lerner, Josh Mandell, and Ben Saltzman. The Maccabi Games is a week-long Olympic tournament for Jewish teenage athletes, ages 14-16 years old. It is held in numerous venues across the United States. 

 

Bennett proudly said, “Competing in the Maccabi Games was a unique and thrilling experience for me. It not only was a highly competitive basketball tournament, but it also emphasized the importance of building strong values such as good sportsmanship, leadership, team unity, compassion and respect.

This, for me, was an experience of a lifetime!” 


Calendar

PTA Meeting - October 15

Live Music - October 16

Wine Tasting - October 17


Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com