Former Welsh boxers pay tribute to Abercynon’s Dai Dower at their annual meeting

Dai Dower spars with workmate Tommy Day following their shift at Abercynon colliery in April 1954

Abercynon boxer Dai Dower has been fondly remembered by former boxing champions and friends at the annual Welsh Ex-Boxers Association meeting.

The hall at the Taffs Well Ex-Serviceman’s Club was packed with guests not only from Wales but as far afield as Brighton and Bournemouth, and they stood for a minute’s silence in memory of Cynon Valley boxer Dower, who died on Sunday, July 31, at the age of 83, following a stroke.

Dower is one of Wales’ most-celebrated boxers and was voted to receive Rhondda Cynon Taff ’s highest accolade – the freedom of the county borough – before he died.

His family will now be offered to receive the accolade on his behalf.


Dai Dower (left) fights Nazzareno Gianelli during the 1950s

The Abercynon man also has a street in the village named after him – David Dower Close.

A glowing tribute was paid by respected boxing correspondent Wynford Jones at the Association’s meeting,

He said that Dower, who lived in Bournemouth, never forgot his Abercynon roots.

Dai’s most proud moment

He added: “I spoke to Dai several times and he told me that one of his proudest moments was when boxing great Sir Henry Cooper was a surprise guest at his retirement party.”

Mr Jones said the former European Flyweight champion, who became a PE teacher in Bournemouth after his boxing career ended, always remained in great physical shape.


Former World champion Alan Minter recalls some memorable boxing years with former Rhondda boxer Bryn Griffiths at the Association’s meeting

He added: “He maintained a fitness regime all his life.”

Among the hundreds of guests was Rachel Bowes, the owner of the recently launched Boxing Bocsio magazine which also paid tribute to Mr Dower.

There were several ex-champions at the meeting, including Alan Minter, Robbie Reagan and Gavin Rees.

The Welsh Ex-Boxers Association secretary Cyril Thomas added: “Once again, there was brilliant support for the 40th occasion this event has been held.”

A TRIBUTE TO DAI DOWER IN ISSUE 13 OF BOCSIO MAGAZINE

Issue-13-page-33---Wales-mourns-Dai-dower

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