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Announcement

Veteran ref Terry Smith passes

Courtesy Jim Jenkins, Sacramento Bee

Terry Smith, former attorney and Sacramento boxing referee who officated several world title fights in the U.S. and abroad, has died. A native of England, Smith succumbed after a long illness Wednesday at age 76. He began his ring career as an amateur boxer, winning a 156-pound national title in 1959 for Sacramento State when boxing was an intercollegiate sport. In 1960, he was an alternate on a then Cassius Clay-led U.S. Olympic team but never saw action and then had a brief pro career. An attorney for the Sacramento District Attorney’s office, Smith was highly-respected by peers as a referee and judge, but his expertise was tested in a 1987 fight in Sacramento. He braved an angry crowd after disqualifying hometown favorite Tony Lopez for throwing an extra punch after flattening an opponent. To his credit, Lopez never held a grudge and won the rematch by knockout en route to a world junior-lightweight title. “Terry made the right call against Tony but, gosh, that took guts,” said friend and fellow ref Jon Schorle, who was tutored by Smith. Private services are planned.




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