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Forrest defined ‘champion’ in a sport that needed it

We lost more than a great champion when Vernon Forrest was killed Saturday night.

We lost more than a great champion when Vernon Forrest was killed Saturday night. (Las Vegas Sun photo)

A sport often is defined by its stars. So it follows that boxing’s reputation has been soiled for decades. Too many champions have ended up destitute or on the police blotter. Or both.

Vernon Forrest was different. It doesn’t seem right that we just lost a great champion — not merely in boxing, but in life.

Forrest was killed Saturday night. It was a random, senseless act, and the wrong guy was caught in the middle of it. Forrest was shot during a robbery, which led to an exchange of gunfire.

“Here’s a guy who did everything right,” Al Mitchell, his long-time trainer and friend, said by phone. “He didn’t take drugs. He wasn’t involved with gangs. He lived his life the right way. He was a gentleman.”

Forrest was one of the most engaging athletes I’ve ever come across. He did charity work. He started a foundation, “Destiny’s Child,” which benefited people with mental …

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