It's been over a month since the last time I posted here. So I thought now might be a good time to start up again as it's the first anniversary of the first and only book talk I gave on Norvel. Soon after this event COVID-19 hit with its full unmerciful fury and the other scheduled talks were cancelled. The image above was taken at that well attended event. It was put on by the Botetourt County Historical Society and hosted by the Fincastle Library. It seems strange not to see any masks being worn by the closely gathered crowd.
The occasion was the kickoff of Black History month in Botetourt County coupled with an ongoing series of events marking the 250th anniversary of the founding of the county. For me, however, it was the coming out party for NORVEL.
In the front row from left to right are Lisa Telles – "Bout's" daughter, Danielle Anderson –Norvel Lee's granddaughter, and Ken Floyd - Norvel Lee's nephew (son of his brother George). Danielle and Ken drove down from Maryland to attend, while Lisa came out from California. Danielle and Lisa stayed with us at our home that night.
You can imagine what it meant to all of us there that night to have the granddaughter of the 1951 AAU's national heavyweight champion and daughter of the national light heavyweight champion be introduced for the first time at that event. You will recall that in the book Norvel and "Bout" became friends on the 1951 Duals Tour together in Europe representing their weight classes in matches against the teams of several European countries. The finale of the trip took place in Gothenburg, Sweden, where Norvel was matched against a young promising Swedish boxer by the name of Ingemar Johansson before an overflow audience.
Next time I will post details about a specific memorable moment that took place later that evening. Stay safe everyone!