July 15, 2016
Vasquez entered the ring via a Humvee and wearing camouflage trunks, so adopting The Sergeant nickname made sense for him. He's an outspoken advocate for veterans, and he doesn't shy from speaking about his battles with post-traumatic stress disorder.
In a tribute to his two tours of duty in Iraq with the U.S. Army, boxer Sammy Vasquez Jr. changed his nickname from The Who Can Mexican to The Sergeant.
Sammy Vasquez (left) throws a punch at Aron Martinez during theirwelterweight bout Saturday, Jan. 23, 2016, in Los Angeles.PHOTO BY AP
The 30-year-old welterweight from Monessen believes he is on the cusp of a title that carries even more clout: How does “world champion” sound?
Vasquez embraces the idea of becoming Western Pennsylvania's next world boxing champ.
His immediate predecessors are two of his heroes. Former heavyweight champion Michael Moorer is from Vasquez's hometown of Monessen, and former lightweight champ Paul Spadafora represented Pittsburgh out of McKees Rocks.
“When I think of Michael Moorer or Paul Spadafora or even Billy Conn, I still am like, to me, he's a great,” Vasquez, 30, said. “To put myself in that category, it's weird for me. I'm still a huge fan. To put my name up there with those guys is an awesome feeling.”
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