J. William Dowd, a retired sales executive and onetime sparring partner to a world light heavyweight boxing champion, died Saturday in his Buffalo home from complications related to diabetes. He was 82.
Mr. Dowd, a graduate of Bennett High School and Canisius College, spent most of his career as a salesman, first at Sinclair Oil Co. and later at Merit AP Parts.
But before his career in sales, he also was a successful boxer. During a stint in the Navy, he served as a sparring partner to former World Light Heavyweight Champion Anton Christofordis of Greece.
At the time, Dowd was a member of the Naval Station Boxing Team and had compiled a record of 30 wins and one loss, his one loss a split decision.
Mr. Dowd, who served in the Philippines, returned to Buffalo after the Navy.
As a longtime resident of Kenmore and Tonawanda, he was active in church functions and Jack Fitzgerald's Club, and he relished his membership in the Democratic Party.
He was the widower of Arlene Adams Dowd.
Survivors include two daughters, Mary Joanne and Susan, and three sons, Brian, Brendan and Sean.
A memorial Mass will be offered at 10 a.m. Saturday in St. John the Baptist Catholic Church, 1085 Englewood Ave, Town of Tonawanda.