STOCKTON – Frank Dobales was recognized for his vitality and fervour for boxing who at instances was in comparison with a well-known cinematic combat coach within the “Rocky” movie franchise.
And whereas he didn’t lead a Rocky Balboa to the heavyweight title, the Stockton combat legend is being remembered for altering the world via his boxing experience and compassion.
Dobales, the founder and volunteer head coach of the Stockton Police Youth Actions program for six many years, handed away at a Stockton hospital on Tuesday as a consequence of problems from COVID-19. He was 91 years previous.
Information of Dobales’ passing introduced an outpouring of tributes from his fighters, mates, fellow trainers and members of the Stockton Police Division. He would groom a number of profitable professional fighters, however usually stated he was happiest taking a gaggle of younger amateurs to a boxing present.
Steve Salas, who succeeded Dobales as Stockton PYA coach in 2012, stated he was impressed by his mentor’s ardour and famous the similarities to a film coach.
“I at all times in contrast him to Mickey from the ‘Rocky’ motion pictures. That was him, particularly when he would stroll in along with his little beanie on his head,” Salas stated. “He was one thing else. Every time he spoke within the gymnasium, all people listened. He was so properly revered and did a lot for the youngsters on this city. He was a legend.”
Police Chief Eric Jones stated he was proud to face subsequent to the veteran coach when the current home of the Stockton PYA program at McKinley Park was named “Frank Dobales Gym” in 2013.
“Frank basically based the Stockton Police Youth Actions program within the Sixties, and thru the years helped and skilled hundreds of girls and boys from all walks of life,” Jones stated. “He taught them not simply the basics of boxing, but additionally life abilities. And he by no means took a cent, it was all volunteer (at Stockton PYA). Frank was a pillar of the group.”
Dobales was a local of Firebaugh, which he affectionately referred to as “Fireball,” and moved to Stockton as a teenager. He labored as a longshoreman, and started his boxing profession as a bantamweight on a dare in Stockton within the late Nineteen Forties when Stockton promoter Billy Hunefeld requested him to fill in for a fighter who didn’t present up.
However boxing was interrupted when he was drafted into the USA Military in the course of the Korean Battle.