Roy Jones Jr. was born on January 16, 1969 in Pensacola Florida. Unlike
other black boxers Roy developed his boxing skills on a hog farm in a hamlet
called Barth, outside Pensacola, when many others developed there’s in the
city ghettoes. He was the oldest of five. He had three sisters and onr brother.
;#9;Roy’s father Roy Sr. said that he is the one who sparked Roy Jr.
interest in boxing, by play sparring with him when he was only five. Roy Sr.
said, "I’d let him pounch me in the head. When I pounched him, he’d get
mad and run off and cry. Then he’d come back and want to do more. When
we’d finish I let him get the best of me." Roy Sr. was also a former
middleweight competitor. Roy’s dad made Roy Jr. to fight a 14 yr. old when
Roy himself was only 10. The boy out weighed him by 16 lbs.
;#9;The training facilities weren’t to Roy Sr.’s standard so he constructed
his own ring in a pasture and fmade a punching bag with scrap materials.
Local kids watched as Roy’s father taught him the fundamentals of boxing.
Soon they got interested and a boxing club was formed. Roy Sr. used his
own money to buy boxing equipment and at one point sold the family’s
tractor to finance the boxing club. This wasn’t enough though because he
had to ask others that he knew for money to take the kids to boxing
tournaments in neighboring states. The only form of transportation was an
old rickety van, which doors were held with metal wire.
By the time Roy was 19 he had a amatuer record of 106-4 and became
the yungest member of the 1988 U.S. Olympic boxing team. In public the
team teased Roy but when in the private they asked him for advice. They
saw how he dominated his opponents with cobonations from many different
angles. Everyone thought that he would deffinetly win gold in the 156 lbs
weight class. Like everyone thought he reached the final round. His
opponent was the South Korean Park Si Hun. When the fight was over
Park’s face was beaten while Roy’s face seemed untouched. The crowd and
the Journalist at ringside all thought that Roy had unanamously won the fight,
because Roy also had two standing eight counts along with everything else.
Three of the five judges scored the fight for Park though. They were the ones
from Uganda, Uruguay, and Morocco. Everyone knew that Roy had been
cheated. Even Parker himself was suprised, he even later admitted that Jones
had bested him. To make up for the unfairness the International Boxing
Association gave Roy the Val Barker Cup. The later investigation found out
that two of the three judges had been had been wined and dinedby their
Korean hosts. No evidence was found on the third judge though so Roy had
to settle for the silver medal.