BALTIMORE (WJZ) ―He was called the ring master. Hundreds of family and friends gathered today to say goodbye to Baltimore boxing legend Mack Lewis.
Gigi Barnett takes a look at his life and how he helped dozens of young men win in and out of the ring.
The power of boxing coach Mack Lewis’s punch was no match for the power of his life.
“I am a better man because this man’s man, this good man, touched my life,” said Dr. P.M. Smith, Huber Memorial Church.
For more than 50 years, Lewis was a boxing legend training young men and boys in his east Baltimore studio. Some of them became champions.
Mr. Mack, as they all called him, died last week. He was 92. Friday, friends and family remembered him as a mentor.
“The thing I admired most about Mr. Mack was that he treated everybody the same way. The good fighters and the bad fighters,” said Al Goldstein, retired Baltimore Sun reporter.
As a coach, “he did pull no punches,” said Gary Wilson, Lewis’ nephew. “He didn’t care who you was. Nephew…You had to fight. ‘Get back in there, boy. Fight. Put them hands up. Fight.’ “
Mr. Mack was also an advocate for young men who used boxing as a way out of a life of crime.
“For all of the kids out here that’s not doing what they’re supposed to do, you need to put the guns down and put the gloves up,” said Marvin McDowell, Lewis’ mentee. “And boxing will save their lives. It saved mine.”
Mr. Mack’s East Baltimore boxing studio is located on the corner of Broadway and Eager streets. Next month, the city plans to rename the street “Mack Lewis Way.”
Mr. Mack is survived by his wife Annie “Pearl” Lewis. They were married for 67 years.