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Ezzard Charles

Ezzard Charles Profile Image
  • Nickname: The Cincinnati Cobra
  • Date of Birth: 7th July 1921
  • Died: 28th May 1975 (53 years old)
  • Career length: 19 years 5 months
  • Status: Deceased
  • Nationality: USA Flag USA
  • Birthplace: Lawrenceville, Georgia, USA Flag Lawrenceville, Georgia, USA
  • Residence: Cincinnati, Ohio, USA Flag Cincinnati, Ohio, USA
  • Division: Light Heavyweight
  • Height: 183cm
  • Reach: 185cm
  • Stance: Orthodox
  • BoxRec: Ezzard Charles
  • Debut: 12th March 1940


Ezzard Charles's remarkable journey through the boxing world leaves a legacy transcending the sport. Known as the "Cincinnati Cobra," his contributions and achievements within the ring have cemented his status as a formidable champion and a symbol of resilience, skill, and sportsmanship. His life story reflects the highs and lows of the pursuit of greatness, underscoring the indomitable spirit that defines true champions.

Charles's rise from a challenging childhood in Cincinnati to the pinnacle of boxing greatness is a testament to his dedication, hard work, and unyielding determination. His ability to excel across different weight classes, defeating numerous Hall of Famers, showcases his versatile skill set and adaptability. Although he never clinched the Light Heavyweight title, his dominance in the division and subsequent reign as the World Heavyweight Champion highlight his exceptional talent and perseverance.

What sets Charles apart even more is his profound impact on the boxing community and beyond. His friendship with Rocky Marciano and proximity to Muhammad Ali reflect the deep connections and respect he garnered among his peers. His battles inside the ring, particularly the historic fights against Marciano, are celebrated for their intensity, bravery, and sportsmanship. These bouts are a significant part of boxing history and lessons in courage and respect.

Charles's later years, marred by illness and financial difficulties, paint a poignant picture of the challenges athletes face after their careers dim. His battle with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and the subsequent support from the boxing community underscore the spirit of camaraderie and support that sports can foster. His passing in 1975 marked the end of an era and the beginning of a lasting legacy that continues to inspire.

Today, Charles's memory is preserved through various honours and recognitions, from renaming streets in Cincinnati to his induction into the International Boxing Hall of Fame. The unveiling of a statue in his honour in Cincinnati commemorates his achievements and serves as a beacon of inspiration for future generations. His rank among the greatest fighters of all time is a fitting tribute to his contributions to boxing and his enduring legacy as a champion both in and out of the ring.

Ezzard Charles's story is a powerful reminder of the profound impact sports figures can have, transcending their achievements in the arena to leave a lasting mark on society. His legacy endures, inspiring boxers and anyone striving to overcome adversity in pursuit of greatness.