By Gabriel F. Cordero
Photo: Teddy B. Blackburn
Today they will lay to rest the body of Hector “Macho” Camacho in the St. Raymond Cemetery in the Bronx. According to some he was born in Toa Baja, Puerto Rico and according to others in Bayamon, but we know he spent his childhood in the Spanish Harlem district of New York City. Like many Latin American children who see careers in boxing, baseball, soccer and horse racing as their best chance of fame, glory and money, this Puerto Rican child with great charisma and boxing skills went on to become world champion in three different divisions.
Sadly, Camacho now joins names like Alexis Arguello and Edwin Valero who recently left us in tragic and unfortunate circumstances. But beyond his human faults and mistakes, the Hector Camacho story is a story of pride, passion and dedication that became the inspiration for new generations of children who saw in this champion an example of how a poor boy can reach the top with their hands and movement in the ring to have a better lifestyle.
I want to say goodbye with a last ten count to this Puerto Rican legend. Our paths crossed at various times and he never said ‘no’ and always showed affection and respect for those trying to do an interview or get some quotes.
When Camacho boxed, millions of boxing fans worldwide applauded him. Others jeered him. But he never went unnoticed.
Today we say farewell to a legend who was dazzling with both his boxing skills and his charisma. Thank you “Macho” Camacho. Your show was spectacular. You will be missed.