The long-standing President of the World Boxing Council, Jose Sulaiman has died at the age of 82 following a battle with illness. A good friend to WBN, Mr. Sulaiman will be sorely missed and our thoughts go out to his family.
In response, the WBC have released a statement entitled ‘He did it his way’ which reads as follows:
Jose Sulaiman will be remembered as a man of integrity, honorability and pure heart. Inspired by his heroes, believed in unbreakable values and principles and lived a life to the fullest and he did it his way, as Frank Sinatra would sing on “My Way”.
Always successful, a natural leader who would never give up, “there are no impossible tasks, some just take a bit longer”. That was the spirit of Don Jose. His life dedicated to the service of others, inspired by his parents education and example, led to a life full of satisfactions, he took tremendous joy by helping others, specially the underprivileged and the discriminated.
Many call him the father of boxing; he certainly treated all fighters as his sons and daughters, he suffered from their problems and worked every single day of his life to try to make boxing better and safer. Regardless if the boxer was an amateur or if he was Mike Tyson or Chavez, he would treat them the same and would relentlessly try to help each one at all times.
Nelson Mandela inspired him to fight against discrimination, battled Apartheid and always struggled to prevent the abuse of power, which hurt the lesser gifted. He led many actions towards dignifying the sport of boxing, the female practice of boxing and the justice for trainers, managers, promoters and specially boxers.
Pope John Paul II inspired him to be a better human being every day and to be humble, to serve and love. Pope Francis brought faith back to him in these few months as God’s representative on earth and the Virgin of Guadalupe remained by his side at all times while Jesus Christ was his greatest guide and inspiration.
Our dear father fought the last 12 rounds of his life, inspired by his hero Muhammad Ali, his corner formed by many doctors, nurses, care partners, therapist, lift team and staff at 7ICU at UCLA and with thousands cheering him from all over the world…
The final bell rang; Jose Sulaiman, winner by unanimous decision!
Jose Sulaiman – 1931-2014