Monday, November 14, 2011
Drama surrounds S.C. burial for Joe Frazier
By Michael Woods
Funeral services are taking place in Philadelphia for Joe Frazier as we speak. But a source close to the Frazier family informs NYFightblog that there is drama surrounding plans to bring the Hall of Famer boxer's body to his hometown of Beaufort, S.C., for final burial.
The source tells us that the prospect of a lawsuit has been brought up by one of Frazier's 11 children who seeks to give the father a special sendoff in Beaufort, where he grew up and was known by locals as "Billy Boy." That sibling wants the Beaufort burial; other siblings are against the Beaufort burial, and want him buried in his adopted hometown, Philadelphia.
Drama also exists in regards to costs for the services. On Friday and Saturday, Smokin' Joe lay in state at the Wells Fargo Center in South Philly so fans could say their goodbyes. Further costs would be incurred in S.C., though officials there, and local businesspersons are said to be picking up some of the expense.
Floyd Mayweather, the flashy, trash-talking hitter, quickly volunteered to write a check when he heard of Frazier's passing. "My condolences go out to the family of the late great Joe Frazier. #TheMoneyTeam will pay for his Funeral services," he tweeted. But the source says that other people have dug into their pockets to help. "Hollywood people have helped out. Will Smith has given a ton," the source told us.
One other prominent ex-fighter also wrote a check, but when I reached out to him to get more specifics, he asked I not publicize his good deed. Smith also didn't send out a release about his donation, for the record.
NYFightblog hopes that all the siblings come together, and get on the same page. The days immediately following a death can of course be ultra-stressful, and we hope the siblings, and all the family, are able to find peace and harmony during a trying time.
Follow me on Twitter here. Send suggestions or feedback to FightblogNYC@gmail.com.