Even though former world champion boxer, Hector Camacho Snr, was declared brain dead this past Thursday after having been shot in his home city in Puerto Rico on Tuesday, his family requested that he be kept on life support a few more days.
Dr Ernesto Torres, the director of the Centro Medico Trauma Center in San Juan stated "We have done everything we could. We have to tell the people of Puerto Rico and the entire world that "Macho" Camacho has died, he is brain dead."
According to his doctor, Camacho was shot in the face. They revealed a bullet had entered his jaw, got lodged in his shoulder after tearing through several main arteries in his neck which affected blood flow to his brain. He had been seated in the passenger seat of a parked vehicle and was shot by someone in a passing car. The driver of the vehicle Camacho was in, died at the scene. It was reported that the Police retrieved ten bags of cocaine from the vehicle, nine of which were in the driver's possession but one was open in the car.
On Saturday, November 24, Camacho's mother turned his life support machine off while his family were present at his bedside.
Camacho lived a reckless life outside the ropes. But inside the ropes he was a great fighter. He was a three weight world champion having won his first belt at super featherweight in August 1983. He followed that up by winning the WBC lightweight belt and then the WBO light welterweight belt, which he won on two occasions. He went to 38-0 before suffering his first loss and had fought at least a dozen world champions in his long career. His last fight was just before he turned 48. He had eight fights in his 40's and won most of them, against younger men.
Camacho was well known for his extravagant ring walks where he loved to shock his fans by wearing flamboyant outfits. His record reads like a who's who of boxing. He fought many world champions including the greats like Sugar Ray Leonard, Oscar de la Hoya, Felix Trinidad, Roberto Duran and Julio Cesar Chavez Snr. His final record was 79-6-3 with 38 KO's. Four of his six losses were to world champions.
I first met him in 1999 while I was in training camp for my fight with Erik Morales. He was also in camp and we were working out at Greg Hannley's gym, Prince Ranch Resort, in Las Vegas. Camacho was so nice to me, my wife, Cheryl, my daughter, Wynona, and my friends. He took the time for pictures and also joked around.
Hector Camacho had a long distinguished career. He will be missed but will never be forgotten for what he did in boxing. His son, Hector Jnr, will carry his name forward in the sport. His boxing record speaks for itself. He stood up to everyone he fought and never backed down. The Hall of Fame in Canastota was still a few years away for Camacho but without a doubt, this old school prize fighter will still be inducted.