Johnny Tapia, the former boxing champion in the 90s whose life has been pocked by drugs and arrests, died over the weekend at his home in Albuquerque. Tapia was 45. Police haven’t released any details about his death.
Flamboyant and outgoing, he was a fan favorite despite his penchant for self-destructive behavior outside the ring.
He spent a good part of his life in and out of jail, sandwiching his time between fights with a seemingly never-ending battle with drug and alcohol addiction.
He was raised in Albuquerque’s tough Wells Park neighborhood. As a child, he reportedly witnessed his mother’s murder. He never knew his father. He was raised by his grandparents.
Boxing legend Johnny Tapia found dead [Santa Fe New Mexican]