Gabe Lira, left, and his father Ben
Several hundred people turned out Thursday at Rose Hills Memorial Park for the funeral of former boxer/trainer Gabe Lira of Whittier. Lira succumbed July 13 after a 10-month battle with a fungal brain infection that eventually led to heart failure.
Speakers eulogizing Lira talked about his gregarious personality, how he joked with family and friends and was always smiling.
Lira went 7-3-1 with four knockouts in the 1980s. A parks and recreation worker, he helped his father train fighters out of the Teamsters Youth Boxing Club in South El Monte. Lira was 54.
On hand were middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin and his trainer, Abel Sanchez. Lira’s father, Ben Lira, is Golovkin’s assistant trainer.
Gabe Lira, left, with his father Ben
Gabe Lira, a former boxer and trainer from Whittier, died Wednesday following a 10-month battle with a fungal brain infection. Lira, just 54, succumbed after his heart gave out at Pomona Valley Hospital.
Lira helped his father, longtime area trainer Ben Lira, train boxers out of the Teamsters Youth Boxing Club in South El Monte. Gabe Lira was also a parks and recreation worker and his father learned during the ordeal that made him more susceptible to a fungal brain infection by being around eucalyptus as well as bird and pigeon droppings.
Gabe Lira, who attended Pioneer High in Whittier, boxed professionally from 1982-86. He went 7-3-1 with four knockouts as a featherweight and super featherweight.
Details on his services are pending.