by Austin Killeen
Eddie Owens had an outstanding amateur career, never losing a bout in Western Massachusetts in over 35 fights. Unfortunately upon turning pro, “Red Top” found he had no local venue to employ his trade. The globe trotting Owens found himself fighting in Africa, Europe, South America and England as well as a host of cities around the USA. Whenever one of his fights went to decision the result was usually the same, a loss. Selected as an opponent for Jimmy Dupree in New Jersey, Eddie scored a stunning upset in this their 3rd meeting. Still he had to travel to his opponent’s backyard to get fights. Eddie won 7 in a row including upsets over Mark Tessman, undefeated Richie Kates and Rafael Gutierrez. During this winning streak legislation was passed to allow professional boxing in Springfield, Ma. Owens was finally able to fight before his hometown fans’ scoring wins over Tracy Morrison and Joe Jones. By January of 1973 Eddie was ranked 3rd in Ring Magazine. Unfortunately, a 4th fight with Jimmy Dupree ended his dream of a title fight, losing on a tko in the 7th round. Owens felt that Bennie Briscoe was the toughest fighter he ever fought during his 14 year career. He was very proud of his reign as New England Light Heavyweight Champion which lasted 7 years. This included multiple fights with Paul Cardoza and Bob Benoit. Today, Eddie is retired from the Hamden County Sheriff’s Department. In his free time, “Red Top” (it’s no longer red) likes to pursue his hobby of fishing.