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Book review: Barney Ross

Grade: B


By Douglas Century (Schocken Books, $19.95)

This little gem of a book documents the hardscrabble life of boxer Barney Ross.

Barnet “Barney” Rosofsky was the product of a tough Chicago neighborhood. When he was 14, he watched as his father was gunned down during a botched holdup. His mother suffered a nervous breakdown, and his younger brothers and sisters were placed in an orphanage.

Even though the time was the height of the Great Depression, Ross vowed to make enough money so that his family could be reunited. He turned to one of his few assets, his fists.

He took up boxing and turned professional when he was 19. He changed his name to Ross so that his mother wouldn’t know he was fighting. He would go on to become the world’s lightweight, junior welterweight and welterweight champion.

In 1942, he enlisted in the Marines, and was shipped off to Guadalcanal. After earning a Silver Star during the war, he returned to civilian life. He was later diagnosed with throat cancer and died in 1967. He was 57.

Century, a seasoned reporter and a frequent contributor to The New York Times and Rolling Stone, has written a highly readable book about this fascinating character. Once called one of the two greatest Jewish boxers of the 20th century, Ross was first and always a survivor.

Citizen Online Archive, 2006-2009

This archive contains all the stories that appeared on the Tucson Citizen's website from mid-2006 to June 1, 2009.

In 2010, a power surge fried a server that contained all of videos linked to dozens of stories in this archive. Also, a server that contained all of the databases for dozens of stories was accidentally erased, so all of those links are broken as well. However, all of the text and photos that accompanied some stories have been preserved.

For all of the stories that were archived by the Tucson Citizen newspaper's library in a digital archive between 1993 and 2009, go to Morgue Part 2

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