Chuck Wepner is a retired professional boxer; his life has been the inspiration for numerous Hollywood hits.
However, most things are better in real life than anything else. Here, in this article, we will discuss this spectacular personality that influenced moviemakers throughout the decades.
Chuck Wepner| Early Life, Family, and Education
Chuck Wepner was born on February 26, 1939, in Bayonne, New Jersey, United States. Likewise, his father was Charles William Wepner and his mother was Dolores Wepner.
Similarly, Chuck grew up in the city with his brother, Don, and his parents. Growing up in the streets of Bayonne, New York, taught Chuck to be a brawler as a way to defend himself.
Likewise, Chuck was just a year old when he and his mother moved to his maternal grandmother’s house on 28th street near Hudson Boulevard. Until Chuck was 13, he lived in a room, formerly a coal shed, with his mother and grandmother.
Furthermore, Wepner went to Bayonne High School and actively played for the school’s basketball team. Similarly, Wepner was an active sports player since childhood.
In addition, Chuck is also American by nationality while being mixed ethnicity, i.e., German, Ukrainian, and Polish.
Chuck Wepner| Height & Body Measurements
Similarly, Wepner has always been an avid sports player. Likewise, Chuck has got the stamina and physique to be one too. Therefore, Chuck got to play basketball for the Police Athletic League.
Moreover, Chuck Wepner stands at the height of 6 feet 5 inches (191 cm) while he weighs around 101kg.
Though his body measurements are unknown, there is no doubt he has got an athletic physique. On the other hand, Chuck has dark brown eyes and short blonde hair.
Chuck Wepner| Start of his Career
Right after his high school graduation, he joined the US Marines, where Chuck gained a reputation as a boxer. Similarly, with the physique to withstand other boxers’ punches, Wepner even became a military champion.
Furthermore, Wepner then debuted as a professional boxer in1964 and won the New York Golden Gloves Heavyweight Novice Championship.
Likewise, in his initial years, Chuck has a record of 16 wins and 0 losses which is commendable.
Moreover, with his giant physique and stamina, he was quickly making a name for himself as a boxer.
In addition, Chuck’s win against George Cooper in his first professional match brought him more attention.
Chuck Wepner| Professional Career
Throughout the years, Chuck fought all over the states and defeated popular names likeRudy Pavesi, Jerry Tomasetti, and Ray Patterson. Likewise, he also suffered back-to-back losses against Bob Stallings and Buster Mathis.
However, Wepner redeemed himself on April 28, 1967, when he won the first title, defeating Don McAteer with a fifth-round technical knockout.
The following year, Chuck defeated Forest Ward three consecutive times to a higher automatic stoppage.
Next year, Wepner fought a rookie George Foreman at Madison Square Garden. Unfortunately, the Foreman crushed Wepner in the third round, winning via technical knockout.
Compared to that, Chuck had a more gruesome match against fellow American boxer Randy Neumann. On December 9, 1971, the fight that took place got Chuck the title of the USA New Jersey State Heavyweight.
The two rivals met again, and back on March 8, 1974, at the Madison Square Garden on April 15, 1972. Likewise, Chuck won the match with six rounds after Neumann was knocked out cold.
But the highlight match of his whole career is with the then WBC and WBA Heavyweight Champion Muhammad Ali.
Wepner challenged the titleholder Ali, and their event took place at Richfield Coliseum, Richfield, Ohio on March 24, 1975.
Though Muhammad dominated most of the match, Chuck knocked the World Champion in the ninth round. But as expected, the legend Muhammed Ali got up and won the game with only seconds left.
Chuck Wepner- The Heavyweight Boxer Who Inspired ‘Rocky’
‘Rocky’ movie that started the franchise and made then-struggling actor Sylvester Stallone famous was based on none other than Chuck Wepner himself.
Stallone was awe-struck by the fight between Muhammad Ali and Wepner.
“Suddenly, Stallone went from being a complete joke to being somebody whom everybody watching could identify with- because everybody’s thinking, ‘Yes, I’d like to do that! I’d like to do the impossible, even if only for a moment, and be recognized for it- and have the crowd cheer.”
Soon Stallone put out the screenplay for ‘Rocky,’ the ultimate sport about an underdog boxer that would get win the Best Picture Academy Award. However, Stallone has denied many times that Chuck inspired the movie.
Chuck Wepner – Boxing Record
|Pedro Agosto||4 0 0||UD|
|1969-08-18||George Foreman||3 0 0||TKO|
|1969-06-22||Jose Roman||20 5 1||PTS|
|1969-04-28||Mike Bruce||7 19 2||PTS|
|1969-03-14||Roberto Davila||20 11 0||MD|
|1968-12-13||Jerry Tomasetti||15 6 0||TKO|
|1968-11-09||Mert Brownfield||9 12 0||MD|
|1968-09-26||Forest Ward||4 0 2||TKO|
|1968-05-20||Mike Bruce||7 12 1||PTS|
|1968-04-30||Eddie Vick||11 11 3||SD|
|1968-01-22||Clay Thomas||15 10 3||TKO|
|1967-11-27||Charlie Harris||1 2 1||TKO|
|1967-07-19||Jerry Tomasetti||8 4 0||TKO|
|1967-04-28||Don McAteer||19 8 2||TKO|
|1967-01-18||Lou Hicks||6 9 0||UD|
|1966-10-21||Dave Centi||11 9 0||PTS|
|1966-08-03||Johnny Deutsch||9 2 0||TKO|
|1966-04-06||Cleo Daniels||7 13 1||PTS|
|1966-02-22||Jerry Tomasetti||3 2 0||UD|
|1966-01-07||Buster Mathis||5 0 0||TKO|
|1965-10-19||Bob Stallings||7 5 0||SD|
|1965-03-23||Everett Copeland||2 7 2||PTS|
|1965-01-19||Ray Patterson||10 1 0||SD|
|1964-12-18||Jerry Tomasetti||3 1 0||UD|
|1964-10-27||Everett Copeland||1 6 1||PTS|
What Happened to Chuck Wepner? Where Is He Now?
Chuck Wepner proved to be a worthy opponent in every fight although he lost a few along the way.
On May 2, 1978, after Chuck’s battle with rising star Scott Frank, Chuck announced his retirement from the field.
Likewise, Chuck ended his career with an impressive record of 51 fights with 35 wins, 17 wins by KO, 14 losses, and two ties.
Instead of indulging in other ventures, Wepner started abusing drugs. Because of it, Chuck was charged with four ounces of cocaine in November 1985.
Similarly, Chuck served 17 months in Northern State Prison, Newark, and again another 20 months in New Jersey’s Intensive supervision program.
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Moreover, Chuck’s addiction was also the reason why he failed the audition as a sparring partner in Rocky II.
However, in 2003, Wepner, now a retired boxer, sued Sylvester Stallone for using his name in the Rocky franchise and promotion.
Moreover, Wepner has been a part of yet another 2016 biographical sports drama, Chuck. Furthermore, in the drama, Liev Schreiber played his character and was well-received by the critics.
Similarly, Zach McGowan has been cast for the upcoming film, American Brawler. Likewise, on October 25, 2011, the documentary named ‘The Real Rocky’ was made and aired on ESPN.
Likewise, since2010, Wepner has been working with his third wife, Linda, in the liquor sales for Majestic Wines and Spirits located in New Jersey, US.
Chuck Wepner| Net Worth, Income, and Salary
Though, Chuck Wepner, the former American heavyweight boxer, has an estimated net worth of only $400 thousand as of 2022.
Similarly, most of his income comes from his earnings as an American professional boxer. However, he lost most of the money to drugs and chargers for various cases.
Chuck Wepner| Wife and Family: Personal Life
Unlike his professional boxing career, Wepner’s married life has been through a series of drawbacks. Not to mention, Chuck has been married thrice now.
Likewise, Chuck was first married to Lorma Wepner, with whom he has two children, Chuck Jr and Charlene.
However, for some reason, the couple got divorced and the two parted ways. Furthermore, his second marriage was to Phyllis and had a daughter named Kimberly with her.
However, his second marriage failed. Therefore, in 1995, for the third time, Wepner tied the knot with Linda Wepner. Moreover, the couple is still together and lives in his hometown of Bayonne.
Similarly, the couple seems to be going strong, and they are far from any controversies regarding their marriage.
Chuck Wepner| Social Media Profile
Moreover, Chuck is not usually active on any social media platforms as of now.
Where is Chuck Wepner from?
Likewise, Chuck Wepner is from Bayonne, New Jersey, United States of America.
Is Chuck Wepner the real-life ‘Lucky’?
Yes, Chuck Wepner is without a doubt the real-life ‘Rocky Balboa’.
How tall is Chuck?
Furthermore, Chuck has accumulated a height of 6 feet 5 inches.
How much is Wepner’s net worth?
Moreover, Wepner’s net worth is estimated to be $400k million.
Chuck Wepner: Quick Facts
|Full Name||Charles Wepner|
|Birth Date||February 26, 1939|
|Birth Place||Bayonne, New Jersey, United States|
|Nickname||The Bayonne Bleeder|
|Ethnicity||Mixed(German, Ukrainian, Belarusian)|
|Education||Bayonne High School|
|Father’s Name||Charles William Wepner|
|Mother’s Name||Dolores (née Hrynko) Wepner|
|Age||83 Years Old|
|Height||6 feet 5 inches(196 cm)|
|Shoe Size||Updating Soon|
|Eye Color||Dark Brown|
|Children||Two Daughters and A Son|
|Net Worth||$400 thousand|
|Last Update||May 2022|