Brett Lally Passes
Brett Lally, the former USBA jr middleweight champion, died on August 30.
Apparently he was swimming in his pool when he suffered a seizure or minor stroke and drowned.
“Irish” Brett, a favorite boxer in the Michigan area, was tough in the ring.
He was known for his heart and toughness and a solid body attack.
Brett won the NABF jr middleweight belt in June 1990 with a TKO-4 over Robert Hines in Atlantic City, NJ.
He defended the title suucessfully against Art Serwano in January 1991 via TKO-4 win.
He fought one time for the WBC title losing to Terry Norris in the 1st round on August 1991.
His overall record was 32-12, 19 KOs.
Lally was one good guy out of the ring with the hugest heart for those that he cared for.
Brett Lally DEAD: Boxing Says Goodbye to Former Light Middleweight Champion
Brett Lally, 32-12, 19 KO’s, has passed away. Anyone that watched USA’s Tuesday Night Fights will remember the courage and tenacity of the brawling Irish fighter, often overcoming his opponent’s superior skills with his willpower and work rate.
On November 24th, 1992, Lally would face the top middleweight contender, Tyrone Trice, a fighter that was on a collision course with James Toney. Trice had skill and charisma and had gotten under the skin of Toney. To the surprise of all, Lally was able to outwork Trice and take the decision victory. It was a moment that Lally deserved, one that the viewers celebrated because the underdog, the fighter that you could relate to, had overcome the odds to defeat a top contender.
Lally never was able to capitalize on the victory, but he was always put into tough fights, facing guys like Vinny Pazienza, Otis Grant, Chad Dawson, Terry Norris, Donald Curry, and Dana Rosenblatt. He would hold the NABF Light Middleweight Title and will be remembered as a crowd pleasing, courageous fighter. He will be missed.
Boxer Brett "Irish Hawk'' Lally dies at 48
Brett ‘‘The Irish Hawk’’ Lally would be categorically defined as a pugilist in every sense of the word.
The Westland native, who found his niche as a popular amateur and professional boxer, met an untimely death at age 48 Tuesday night at Dearborn’s Oakwood Hospital. Cause of death has not been determined and memorial arrangements are pending.
Lally, known for his brawling and aggressive style, got his start at the Livonia Boxing Club with older brother Bradd, and eventually captured the 1980 U.S. National Golden Gloves 119-pound title as a teenager at Detroit’s Cobo Arena.
In 1983, Lally turned professional and won his first eight bouts.
In 1989 he hit the main stage at Bally’s Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas when he lost on a second-round TKO to highly-regarded Donald Curry, but bounced back in 1990 scoring a fourth-round TKO over Robert “Bam Bam’’ Hines to earn the vacant NABF light middleweight (154 pounds) title.
“That was probably Brett’s biggest accomplishment, he was a huge underdog in that fight,’’ said Bradd Lally, a former boxer himself who took over Brett’s pro career as a manager in 1988. “Just to get to a world title is something. Brett climbed that mountain-top.’’
Lally also fought for the USBA light welterweight (139 pounds) title, and later gave up his NABF belt to take on Terry Norris in a WBC light middleweight title matchup where he suffered a first-round TKO in 1991.
Lally lost NABF light middleweight (in 1992) and middleweight title (in 1993) shots, to Wayne Powell and Otis Grant, respectively.
In between those two title opportunities, Lally fell in six rounds to Vinny Pazienza, who went 50-10 and beat Roberto Duran twice.
Lally fought on all corners of the U.S. (including Hawaii) and took bouts in South Africa and England.
On March 15, 1994 in Boston, Lally lost to unbeaten Dana Rosenblatt on a ninth-round TKO and left the sport before making an ill-fated comeback as a 40-year-old in 2003 where he suffered a pair of TKOs before retiring.
He wound up with a 32-12 pro record, including 19 knockouts.
“I wouldn’t say Brett was an A-plus fighter by any means, but he gave people their money’s worth,’’ Bradd Lally said. “He was a mean guy in the ring, but outside he’d give you the shirt off his back. Whether you were white, black, Hispanic, everybody loved Brett.’’
Among Lally’s other family survivors include mother Theresa, sisters Lorri, Nancy, Dianne and Debbie, along with brother Brian. He is preceeded in death by his father Thomas, along with brother Todd Joseph.
Lally also had two daughters (Jordian and Brooke).
“He was always in phenomenal shape, he was an old-school boxer and that’s how he wanted to be remembered,’’ said Lally’s nephew Kurt Kuban.
Visitation will be from 2-9 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 1 at Vermuelen Funeral Home, 980 North Newburgh Road in Westland. A funeral mass will take place at 9 a.m., Friday, Sept. 2 at St. Richards Catholic Church, 35851 Cherry Hill Road, Westland.
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