Boxer Orlando Cruz comes out; announces he is ‘a proud gay man’Online Only, Top Highlights Thursday, October 4th, 2012
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – Orlando Cruz, a professional boxer from San Juan, Puerto, former Olympian and currently ranked No. 4 featherweight by the World Boxing Organization (WBO), has announced that he is “a proud gay man.”
Cruz is the first openly gay man in boxing history. “I’ve been fighting for more than 24 years and as I continue my ascendant career, I want to be true to myself,” said Cruz. “I want to try to be the best role model I can be for kids who might look into boxing as a sport and a professional career. I have and will always be a proud Puerto Rican. I have always been and always will be a proud gay man.”
Orlando Cruz began boxing at the age of 7 and posted an amateur career record of 178-11. He won seven Puerto Rico national titles and spent four years on The Puerto Rican national team. Cruz won seven gold medals, one silver and two bronze in various international tournaments. His amateur career culminated as a representative of the 2000 team in Sydney, Australia. 2000 Olympic teammates included former world champions Miguel Cotto and Ivan Calderon.
Cruz made his professional debut Dec. 15, 2000 and won his first world title March 22, 2008 (vacant IBA Featherweight Title) and a regional title Oct.r 14, 2011 (WBO Latino Featherweight title). His next fight is scheduled for Oct. 19 at the Kissimmee Civic Center in Kissimmee, Fla. in which he will defend his WBO NABO title against Jorge Pazos.
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