Fireman Jim Flynn September 08 2013, 8 Comments
On February 13, 1917 Fireman Jim Flynn entered the ring with a young up-and-comer Jack Dempsey. Jim Flynn who had passed the height of his career charged to the center of the ring and quickly sent the Manassa Mauler to ground with a devastating right. Twenty seconds later, Dempsey was still trying to find his feet. Here is an account of the knockout.
'With Dempsey still bent over and walking toward Flynn, both forearms and gloves covering his face, Flynn rushed again. The Pueblo battler gave Dempsey's head a quick shove toward his right and sent a short right hand hook through Dempsey's guard and straight to the point of the chin. (Salt Lake Telegram)
Dempsey was down 10 seconds in to the bout.'
That quick, embarrassing loss was the only time in Jack Dempsey's storied career (66-6-11) that the future champion was ever knocked out and it was the highlight of Jim Flynn's career, a fighter who 'fought them all' but never earned the heavyweight title. For a time, Fireman Jim Flynn was the best hope of defeating the feared Jack Johnson but was never able to best the 'Galveston Giant' in three tries. Jim Flynn was famous however for knocking out aspiring contenders with such neatness that he became known as the 'Destroyer of Hopes.' Jim Flynn ended his career with 47 wins, 41 losses, and 17 draws.
Jim Flynn was born in Hoboken, NJ with name Andrew Chiariglione. He was actually of Irish-Italian descent, but took the name Jim Flynn for professional purposes as the Irish were some of the most devoted boxing fans at the time. When Flynn was a young man, the family moved to Pueblo, CO where he took up railroading and became a fireman for the Pueblo Fire Department and the Denver and Rio Grande Railroad. Jim Flynn remained with the fire service throughout most of his boxing career.
While researching ideas, the legendary knockout of Jack Dempsey, the Manassa Mauler combined with the workman-like boxing career of the underdog Jim Flynn inspired us to create a design honoring Flynn for Hook & Irons. Choosing the the designer was easy for this one. Steve Wolf specializes in hand-drawn art and works frequently with different sports topics. Additionally, he is a collector of vintage boxing artifacts and he seemed as excited, if not more, to bring this idea to life. As there is no poster for this event that we know of that still exists, we asked Steve to imagine a poster for the bout using the style of lettering and drawing that was popular at the time. We also asked him to draw his best rendition of Jim Flynn. The final design couldn't be more striking than the photo he worked from. We hope you enjoy the design and the small piece of history where the workman--the fireman--the boxer--the constant fighter--won one for the underdog.
Frank Stallone on March 19 2020 at 05:00PM
I’m a former fighter and boxing historian, I have a photo of FJF in the hospital in Los Angeles moments before he died, he worked as a bartender downtown the building is still but not a bar.I believe he’s buried at Calvary Cemetery in LA . Hope that is of some help
toby smith on April 22 2019 at 10:05AM
I am writing a book about a boxing match between Jack Johnson and Jim Flynn,in 1912.
I have a couple of questions to ask you. I hope you will respond.
Toby Smith on June 27 2018 at 02:42PM
Does anyone know where Jim Flynn is buried?
Gary M Micheli on January 09 2018 at 10:39PM
I am a retired firefighter with the Pueblo Fire Department. Along with Mark Pickerel, also a fireman with PFD, we run Hose Co No. 3 Fire Museum which is the old fire house your great, great grandfather is said to have worked out at. The museum (Old Fire Station No 3) is still owned by the City of Pueblo and is located at 116 Broadway Ave in what they call the Mesa Junction Area.
You can access information and pictures of this grand old fire station on our web site www.hosecono3.com
We are both members of Pueblo Fire Fighters Historical Society which is 501 c 3 organization charged with preserving the very special history off Pueblo, the fire department and the valiant men who served the fire service. It presently is the second oldest building the city owns and the only station left with the famous brass pole.
We bought a pair of old boxing gloves and play to set up a small display of Fireman Jim Flynn.
It would be great to have you/family visit this very special part of Pueblo History.
Contact Information: (719) 821-1273 firstname.lastname@example.org 116 Broadway, Pueblo, CO 81003
Toby Smith on September 11 2015 at 06:58PM
I am trying to reach Marcus Flynn, who has responded to this article.
Would you please respond to me. I want very much to ask you about your great-grandfather.
My email is email@example.com My telephone is 505-681-0667
Pam Miller on August 30 2015 at 12:17PM
Marcus – Fannie Vedder was in my husband’s family tree and I’m interested in what happened to Jim and Fannie’s son. Can you contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org?
Jim Flynn on June 23 2015 at 03:52PM
Was in Jack Dempsey’s Bar, in the late 50’s and about crapped, when I saw a mural of Fireman Jim Flynn, on the wall. I was in the Navy at the time and in town for r&r. I’ve never forgotten that mural and wish I had taken a pic of it.
I’m into genealogy and my Flynn’s are from Westport, County Mayo, Ireland; always lookin; for a connection to the Fireman.
Have watched the FJF/JD fights several times on tv and FJF appeared to butt the crap out of JD, until JD knocked ’im out that is.
I’m 74 and retired, now farming, did some boxing in the Navy. My father and older son are also Jim Flynn’s.
Have a good one!!!
Marcus Flynn on September 02 2014 at 02:12PM
I really liked your design and your Article..
My name is Marcus Flynn and I am The Fireman Jim Flynn’s great grandson…. Thank you from the bottom of our heart for the design and great remarks