Smart and lucky people are those who can monetise their talent, and extraordinary are those who can create another lucrative world outside their area of work, expanding more and more to some other ventures in life.
George Edward Foreman is an American retired professional boxer who competed in two phases, one from the year 1969 to 1977, and from 1987 to 1997.
His nickname is “Big George”; he is a two-time world heavyweight winner and an Olympic gold medalist.
He is an appointed minister, author, and businessperson.
George had a troubled childhood, but he entered amateur boxing and won a gold medal at the 1968 Summer Olympics.
He is famous for fighting with Joe Frazier in 1973 and participating in one of the memorable fights ever – “The Rumble in the Jungle”. He retired after losing a fight to Jimmy Young in 1977.
George claimed that he had a religious epiphany, and he became an ordained Christian minister; he came back to boxing and was inducted into the World Boxing Hall of Fame and International Boxing Hall of Fame. He is seen as one of the greatest of all time.
Outside boxing, he is a prosperous entrepreneur and known for his development of “the George Foreman Grill”. This product was sold in more than 100 million pieces worldwide, and he has gained some cash by trading the naming rights to the grill for 138 million dollars.
George Foreman was born in Marshall, Texas but he spends his childhood in the Fifth Ward, Houston, with six siblings.
His biological father was Leroy Moorehead, but J. D. Foreman, his stepfather, raised George. His mother married him when George was just a little boy.
His stepfather was an alcoholic who spent his entire railway worker’s wages in drinking, and they all depended on his mother’s payroll.
He was often involved in street clashes and gang conflicts.
George said on many occasions that he was a troubled kid who dropped out of school at the age of just fifteen; he joined the Job Corps. The Job Corps gave Foreman with a link to boxing coach Doc Broaddus, who urged him to apply his combat skills in the ring.
But things in his life took a positive turn when he moved to Pleasanton in California, where he began to train in boxing.
George was natural for sport, and he enjoyed football, where one of his great idols was Jim Brown.
Eventually, he had given it up all for the thing he wanted the most -the boxing.
In one interview, he stated that when he was a young man, he mugged someone and that he was shocked when he was arrested for this event.
George could not understand that someone would arrest him just because he took someone’s money.
George became a professional in 1969 when he had three-round knockout in a fight with Donald Walheim in New York.
In same that year Foreman had a sum of 13 fights that year, acquiring all of them, and 11 of them were by a knockout.
Next year, in 1970 he maintained his walk to the indisputable heavyweight title champion – he has won all 12 of his bouts.
He fought Gregorio Peralta, and they fought at Madison Square Garden; then he had a match with George Chuvalo, and he won by technical knockout in three rounds. After this win, George beat Charlie Polite in 4 rounds and Boone Kirkman in 3.
Foreman in 1971 had seven more fights he won them all with the knockout, including a rematch with Peralta.
After accumulating a record of 32–0, 29 with the knockout, Foreman was ranked as the number one challenger by the WBA and WBC.
Next year Foreman was undefeated and had an impressive knockout record – the next logical step was to challenge undefeated World Heavyweight Champion, at that time it was Joe Frazier.
Foreman was not a favorite, despite all things that were in his favor.
This match played out on January 22, 1973, in Kingston, Jamaica.
Foreman was dominant in this fight and won his way with the technical knockout. ABD reported said the famous sentence -“Down goes Frazier!
This match ended in two rounds, and after the second knockdown, Frazier could not deal with Foreman. Even if Freizer stood up, the judge finally called an end to the one-sided bout.
Some say that Foreman is an antisocial champion – he did not cooperate with media well; he was not available to the press.
Foreman later attributed his behavior through this time as an emulation of Sonny Liston, for whom he had been an infrequent sparring co-worker.
He defended his reign as champion – against Puerto Rican Heavyweight Champion José Roman. His next match was with a much mightier opponent.
It occurred in 1974, in Caracas, Venezuela with Ken Norton a fighter regarded for his awkward crossed-arm boxing style, and heavy punch.
He is known for breaking a jaw of Muhammad Ali during one match.
After an even first round, Foreman wavered Norton with an uppercut, judge intervening and stopped the fight. This battle became recognised as the “Caracas Caper”. This win gave him a 40–0 record with 37 knockouts.
Next, and maybe the most notorious fight was against Muhammad Ali, this fight is considered to be historical.
This match played out in 1974, in then Zaire (now Congo) to secure his title against Ali, and it was known for the name “The Rumble in the Jungle”.
Because Foreman was cut above his eye, the match was postponed; this event set the match in certain curs. There was an opportunity for the cut to be open.
In one interview, George said that he was drugged by his trainer.
But he was favored since he had defeated both Joe Frazier and Ken Norton within two rounds.
In the ring, Ali was aggressive and was hitting Foreman in the face every way he could.
George was incapable of landing many big punches to Ali’s head that was able to counter off the strings with blows to the face occasionally and punched Foreman’s defense.
In the eighth round, George was left off balance and Ali knockdown Foreman.
In one interview, Foreman said that he knows that this night was not his night.
Later he fought Richard Dunn, Jean Pierre Coopman, Chuck Wepner, Alfredo Evangelista, Ron Lyle and Joe Frazier.
He did not have any fights in 1975, but the next year he declared a comeback and said that he wants a rematch with Ali.
Forman’s first opponent was to be Ron Lyle, they fight aggressively, and Lyle has to give in, so George gave a dozen open blows until Lyle collapsed.
Foreman was named “The Fight of the Year.”
Next, he fought Joe Frazier in a rematch – who was eventually surprised twice by George in the fifth round, and the match was finished. Also, Foreman knocked out Scott LeDoux and John Dino Denis.
After being away from the ring for a full decade, in 1987 he announced that is having a comeback at the age 38, and he said that his primary motive for a comeback is raising money for the youth centre that he leads.
He also said that he wanted to fight Mike Tyson.
This match played out in Sacramento, California, where he beat Steve Zouski – he succeeded even he was overweight and out of shape.
He also said that he wanted to prove that his age was not the barrier for making his goals a reality.
Foreman won four more bouts that year, and an went back to his shape – he developed a new, relaxed fighting style, as he said it.
In 1989, Foreman sold his name and face for selling numerous products, selling everything from grills to scarfs on TV.
The whole team changed his public persona, and he became more relaxed and friendly.
Because he was a friend of Muhammad Ali, he followed his advice and became a famous celebrity outside boxing.
In 1991, he fought Undisputed Heavyweight Champion Evander Holyfield and lost the match after 12 rounds on a decision.
Foreman was not done though with boxing, and he had something more to show to the world. On November 5, 1994, he retrieved the world title when he beat Michael Moorer in a shocking upset.
He has been the part of reality TV on more occasions – in 2016 he was the part of “Better Late Than Never”, a reality-travel series that takes him — along with his fellow castmates William Shatner, Henry Winkler and Terry Bradshaw — around the world. They had travelled and explored foreign cultures.
George had a turbulent personal life, he married and divorced twice, all that in the period from 1981-83; and he has a total of 12 children – five sons and seven daughters
He was married to Adrienne Calhoun (from 1971 to 1974).
From 1977- 1979 he was married to Cynthia Lewis, then he married Sharon Goodson in 1981 and stayed with her until 1982, and then he married Andrea Skeete from 1982 to 1985.
In 2009 and 2012, Foreman adopted two girls, Isabella Brandie Lilia and Courtney Isaac.
One his wife left him and went to Barbados with children, but George found them and bring them back.
He is now married to Mary Joan, and they are in one good marriage, as it seems – they appeared together on a reality show that is completyl dedicated to his life. They often volunteer together for different causes.
George became the oldest heavyweight champ in history when he beat out Michael Moorer in the 10th round; Foreman was 45 at that time.
After his loss from Muhammad Ali, George, as he said it himself, was in destructive behaviour – it is stated that he was changing women and wasting money. But the fate had something different for George – in the year 1989, Muhammad Ali became his good friend.
It is said that George made a comeback to boxing in 1987 when he wasted all of his money and he did not have any recourses to support his children.
During his boxing match for the title with Michael Moorer that occurred in Las Vegas, George wore the same red trunks that he wore when he lost the same title to Ali 20 years back.
1977 was the year where everything changed for Foreman – after one fight he was sick in the dressing room since he suffered from exhaustion and heatstroke.
As he said, he had a near-death experience – Foreman said that he felt like he is in some place that is like hell. It was death, he said on one occasion. George was not religious, but this was the moment when he spoke to God, asking him for some help.
Foreman wanted to change his life – he said that he had an experience that was unlike anything else and that he came after it as a born-again Christian. He devoted himself to God, even if he did not formally retire from boxing; he stopped fighting and became an ordained minister.
First, he was preaching on street corners before becoming the reverend at the Church of the Lord Jesus Christ in Houston.
Foreman also opened a youth centre that is called after him; also Foreman shares his conversion encounter on Christian television broadcasts such as The 700 Club and the Trinity Broadcasting Network.
He was hired as a spokesperson for the ‘fat-reducing grill’ by Russell Hobbs – it was reported that this firm paid him around 137 million dollars to buy out the rights for his name to name a grill the ‘George Foreman Grill’.
This has been one very successful business that gained him a lot of his fortune, but this is connected to one more thing.
Many times George spoke about his need to eat healthily and to watch on his diet.
The International Boxing Research Organization has rated George as the eighth greatest heavyweight of all time; in 2002, The Ring magazine was named him as one of the 25 greatest fighters of the past 80 years and the ninth greatest puncher of all time. George gained some money by doing analyse for HBO’s boxing coverage.
Big Georges net worth is roughly 300 million dollars – he has been active in many ventures, and he has not forgotten on his spiritual side either.
Full name: George Edward Foreman
Date of birth: January 10, 1949
Birthplace: Marshal, Texas, USA
Age: 70 years
Profession: Professional Boxer, Entrepreneur, Actor, Minister, Author
Height: 1,92 m
Weight: 118 kg
Net Worth: 300 million dollars