By: Hans Themistode
It’s been nearly 20 years since Roberto Duran has traded blows with someone inside of a boxing ring. Yet it turns out that the 69 year old former multiple division world champion still has a lot of fight left in the tank.
Duran was recently diagnosed and hospitalized with COVID-19. Fears grew as he has battled with an impaired lung due to a car accident several years. The deadly disease has feasted on both the elderly and those who suffer from respiratory issues, which made Duran an ideal target.
When the news broke, the boxing community collectively sent out a prayer and wished for his speedy recovery. Now, only a few days later, their wish has come true.
As of yesterday afternoon on July 2nd, Duran has been discharged from a hospital in his hometown of Panama City. Doctors deemed the former champion in well enough health to continue his recovery process from the comfort of his home.
Duran’s battle with COVID-19 may have taken place outside of the ring, but it reminded him of his numerous championship fights between the ropes over the course of his 30 year plus career.
“With God’s favor, I returned home after battling the COVID-19 virus,” said Duran via Instagram. “It was a World Championship fight, which I could win as a team, with the support, love and dedication of a medical team, who not only took care of me, but of all the patients, who, like me, fought in the hospital against this virus. To all those people who continue in the fight, I send a lot of strength and my prayers. Do not lose your hopes and know that God is in control. To all my fans around the world, I thank you for praying for me. Thank you for all your messages of encouragement.”
The accomplishments of Duran inside of the boxing ring is one of the most impressive in history. World title wins in four separate weight classes coupled with wins over Iran Barley and Ray Leonard pushed him into all-time great status. But even with the countless victories and championship reigns, it pales in comparison to those who have helped not only Duran get through his battle with COVID-19 but others as well.
“I will never tire of thanking all the doctors, nurses, who give their best every day. Regardless of the risk they take. I will be a former World Champion, but you are the true CHAMPIONS OF LIFE.”
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