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Charley Dunn

Boxing ∙ Ambridge

 

 

 

 

It wasn’t fashionable to be Polish in 1912 when Charley Dunn began his amateur lightweight boxing career at age 17. Irish fighters were the rage then, so the ring announcer promptly re-christened Charley Dombroski as “Charley Dunn.” Young Charley Dunn became so well known in Beaver County during his boxing career that he later had his surname legally changed and kept the moniker the rest of his life. Charley was born in Braintree, Massachusetts, on July 14, 1894, and came to Western Pennsylvania with his parents at the turn of the century. After winning his first 13 amateur fights, Charley was crowned Middle Atlantic Amateur lightweight Champion for 1912 at a tournament in Pittsburgh, but he missed a chance to compete in the 1912 Olympic Games in Stockholm because the committee voted not to include boxing that year, although he had been chosen as a member of the team that had been expected to represent the US in the Olympics. Starting in 1913, Charley had a successful professional boxing career as a lightweight: he fought 157 bouts before retiring in 1920 at the age of 26 because of a leg injury he had suffered while serving as an Army boxing instructor. After his discharge, Charley appeared as a headliner on fight shows as far away as Colorado. Following his retirement from the ring, he served as a manager, trainer, and referee well into the 1940s. Charley was inducted into the Beaver County Boxing Hall of Fame in 1970.