Sometimes, nice things happen.

Late Friday afternoon I received an unexpected call from an eleven year old Detroit boy. His father was Darnell “Hard” Knox, a heavy-hitting boxer well known to those of us who followed boxing in the 1980’s. I mean, Darnell was really good. At 6’1″, about 155 pounds and hitting southpaw, he was always a knockout threat. Darnell’s career was eventually handled by Detroit legend Emanuel Steward. In late October of 1987 Steward set up a fight at the Las Vegas Hilton with Michael Nunn for the NABF Middleweight Title. It may have been one step too far, for Nunn not only stopped Darnell but busted his nose quite badly. Knox, then just 26 years old, never fought again. His lifetime record was 26-2 with 20 knockouts.

When I was putting together the first series of Helmar’s Famous Athletes series back in 2003, I just knew that I wanted to include a card of Darnell. I tried finding him without success but decided to include the card anyway. I thought that he would like it if he ever came across it. After the cards were printed and distributed in our potato chips, I tried to find him once more–this time to see if he would autograph one for me. Again, no luck.

The story would have stopped there if I hadn’t received that wonderful call from his young son. It seems that Darnell passed away in 2004 from a brain tumor. His son, now eleven, has been doing Internet searches on his father and came across a picture of the card that we’d made. He’s such a delightful young man! I’m going to mail him a few cards plus a large, framed print of the artwork.

11 thoughts

  1. Yolanda, thank you for giving us an update on Victor. He has a very appropriate first name for the son of a great boxer! Did you see that Jose Fuentes had offered a video of his fight with Darnell?


    1. I fought him,very hard puncher and a great record I drop him on the 4th Rd n like always he came back and beat me, if his son don’t have this fight I will send it to him


      1. Jose, that is very kind of you. The contact information that I had for them doesn’t seem to be active now. I hope that they will contact me again. THANK YOU, very kind of you. Charles


      2. Charles, please let me know, I will try and put it on YouTube I have another fight their with Mike martinez


      3. Hi, Jose this is Darnell Knox’s daughter, if you like you can seen the fight to me and I can give it to him call me at 313 208 0315


  2. A beautiful card and a very nice memento for Darnell’s son. I’m sure the items you sent him will be treasured by the Knox family for years to come. Very kind of you, Charles.


    1. Darnell Knox’s son Victor Knox is now 16 years old and he is doing very well academically and pretty good in football also. Thank you do much for the cards. They mean a lot to our son.


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