Friday, February 18th, would have been Artie Curry’s fifty-first birthday. In honor of the occasion, Artie’s mother and some of his friends got together at Portobello’s pizzeria in Manhattan to share memories.
Artie’s family and friends have established the Arthur Curry Scholarship Fund at St. Francis College in Brooklyn. In the words of the charter, scholarships will be awarded to "students of high academic achievement and outstanding character who are entering their senior year of college and, by word and deed, have shown the ability to bring people together."
HBO (where Artie worked throughout his adult life) was particularly generous in funding the scholarship program.
The scholarship program was formally announced on February 18, 2010 (on what would have been Artie’s fiftieth birthday). That morning, Jim Lampley served as master of ceremonies for a celebration of Artie’s life at St. Francis College. Over the course of an hour, friends and-co-workers shared memories of Artie with the St. Francis student body. Among the thoughts offered were:
Jon Crystal: “There are very few one-of-a-kind people who you meet in your life. Professionally, they say that everyone is replaceable. But not Artie. He had a gift for making people feel good. He loved them and they loved him back.”
Seth Abraham: “No matter what was going on in his life, Artie took great joy in helping others.”
Curt Viebranz: “The sorrow I feel is joined with the joy I feel at having known Artie.”
Roy Jones Jr was among the speakers who sought to infuse Artie’s spirit within the St. Francis College community. His remarks were particularly moving.
“I thank God for giving me the opportunity to know Artie Curry,” Roy said. “He came through a lot of things that most people wouldn’t be able to make it through; times when he wasn’t sure he’d see tomorrow. And he came through it with that beautiful smile of his that would melt your heart. There were a lot of years of suffering behind that smile; it didn’t come about easy. But the smile was so big because he overcame all those years of suffering. He was a beautiful person. And he became somebody much bigger than he knew he was.”
“There will never be another person who touches my life like Artie did,” Jones continued. “In our hearts, we were like twins. Nothing he ever did bothered me. The only that bothered me was, I couldn’t be standing there right next to him when he left us. Having a friend is one thing. Having a true friend who’s always there for you, and therefore you must be there for him; those are hard to find. When you find them, hang onto them and don’t be afraid to tell them how you feel about them, because you never know what tomorrow holds. If you talk to your loved ones, let them know that you love them and how you feel about them. If you love somebody and you talk to them, make sure that conversation is always the note you want to end on, because you never know when that song might end.”
The entire sixty-minute program honoring Arthur Curry can be seen on YouTube at:
Readers are urged to visit the site to learn more about this remarkable man.
Lise Curry (Artie’s mother) says, “The scholarship program puts something positive on the loss of Artie.” His friends feel that it’s a wonderful way to honor someone who was all about giving back.
Now is the time for the boxing community and boxing fans to do their part. It’s not enough to simply say that Artie was a great guy. It’s important to stand behind that sentiment. EVERYONE is urged to contribute to the Arthur Curry Scholarship Fund.
PLEASE send a check payable to “St. Francis College - Arthur Curry Scholarship Fund” to:
Development & Alumni Affairs
St. Francis College
180 Remsen Street
Brooklyn Heights, NY 11201
THE CHECK MUST HAVE “ST. FRANCIS COLLEGE” WRITTEN ON IT.
The Arthur Curry Scholarship Fund will preserve Artie’s legacy and enhance the lives of students for generations to come. Donations are tax deductible.
Thomas Hauser can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org