Wimler, Eddie

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EDDIE WIMLER, "The Fairhaven Terror"- No boxer epitomized the image of the working-class Pittsburgh prizefighter more than this sturdy slugger. Born in Germany, Wimler came to Pittsburgh as a child and was raised in a now-defunct neighborhood known as Fairhaven.

A miner by trade, Wimler loved to fight, often engaging in bouts after working back-breaking ten and twelve-hour shifts in the mines. Active from 1910 to 1924, he campaigned for years for a title shot without success, despite going the distance with men such as Memphis Pal Moore and champion Joe Lynch. In nearly two hundred fights he was never knocked out and took part in memorable rivalries with fellow Pittsburgh fighters Dick Loadman (seven bouts) and Patsy Brannigan (nine bouts), in addition to facing noted contenders Johnny Ray, Harry Palmer, and Chick Suggs.

In 1927 a huge benefit at the Southside Market House was held for Wimler, who had been crippled in a mining accident and had a family to feed. The outpouring of support was so enormous that the number of bouts for the evening had to be limited to thirteen. Among the participants were old foes Johnny Ray, Patsy Brannigan, Johnny Kirk, Eddie Carver, Johnny Fundy and Mickey Rodgers. A great deal of money was raised to assist Eddie, who had bravely given his all in the ring for many years. The people never forgot.

He passed away on June 29, 1960, at age 69. —

By Douglas Cavanaugh, Contributor