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The Australian sporting community is mourning the death of beloved boxing legend Johnny Famechon.
The former world champion was 77.
Born Jean-Pierre Famechon in France in 1945, he migrated to Australia when he was five years old and won a world title in 1969, becoming just the third Australian boxer in history to do so.
He became the Lineal and WBC featherweight champion after beating José Legrá of Cuba in a points decision at the Albert Hall in London.
Famechon retired from boxing at the age of 24 after a short professional career that saw him defend his title against Japanese icon Fighting Harada in a controversial decision.
He also knocked out Harada in the 14th round of a rematch in Japan six months later.
Famechon won 56 of his 67 fights at professional level.
Following his 1969 world title victory in London, he received the Keys To The City of Melbourne on returning home.
He defended his WBC title in May of 1970 in Rome against Mexican fighter Vicente Saldivar and retired soon after losing the fight in a close points decision.
Famechon, who never fought as an amateur, was trained by professional prize fighter and leading Australian rules footballer Ambrose Palmer.
He was elevated to Legend status in the Australian National Boxing Hall of Fame in 1992, before being inducted into the World Boxing Hall of Fame in 1997.
He was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) in the 2022 Queen’s Birthday Honours list for significant service to boxing.
In 1991 he suffered an acquired brain injury after being hit by a car in Sydney and suffering a stroke.
A bronze statue of Famechon sits proudly in place in his home town of Frankston in Victoria.
Tributes flow after death of Johnny Famechon
“As a human, he was second to none," fellow Aussie boxing legend Jeff Fenech told 2GB on Thursday.
Tributes have been flowing in on social media after the devastating news.
WBC President Mauricio Sulaiman tweeted: "I am so sorry to learn of the passing away of Australian boxing icon Johnny Famechon. May he rest in eternal peace."
Broadcaster Stephen Quartermain wrote: "Vale Johnny Famechon. A champion. A gentleman. A great Hawthorn FC man."
Author Grantlee Kieza tweeted: "Very sad news."
— Daniel Sankey 🐎 (@Daniel_Sankey) August 3, 2022
I am so sorry to learn of the passing away of Australian boxing icon Johnny Famechon . May he rest in eternal peace
— Mauricio Sulaiman (@wbcmoro) August 3, 2022
Vale Johnny Famechon.
A champion 🥊
A great @HawthornFC man.
— Stephen Quartermain (@Quartermain10) August 3, 2022
Very sad news - the master boxer Johnny Famechon (left with Barry Michael and Lionel Rose) has passed away pic.twitter.com/UhSwTyGyL6
— Grantlee Kieza OAM (@Grantlee_Kieza) August 3, 2022
Vale Johnny Famechon.
My all-time favourite boxer #RIP
— Smokie Dawson (@smokiedawson) August 3, 2022
— Robyn Vaux (@RV_27) August 3, 2022
So sorry to hear about the passing of legendary Aussie boxer Johnny Famechon world featherweight champion. May he RIP 🙏 pic.twitter.com/xtF1w8I5zu
— OBBY (@OBBY001) August 3, 2022
— Adam Auld (@Adam_Auld) August 3, 2022
Johnny Famechon what a truly great Boxer. Absolute champion in the true sense of the word. RIP Fammo and Aussie sporting great.
— Peter Le Grand (@legrandracing) August 3, 2022
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