New York, NY (October 26, 2014) – In his prime, Gary “Bring Da Pain” Bell was a noteworthy heavyweight. As an amateur, the Brooklyn native captured three New York Golden Gloves championships and had his sights set on a world title in the paid ranks.
In 1996, world champion and future hall of famer Evander Holyfield enlisted the ultra-aggressive Bell as a sparring partner leading up to his first bout against Mike Tyson. Throughout camp, Bell did his best to mimic Iron Mike and reportedly got the best of Holyfield during some of their sparring sessions. Impressed with Bell’s ability, Holyfield signed on to become his manager. The two sparred again for Holyfield’s rematch with Tyson. This time, Holyfield reportedly got the better of Bell.
The fearless Bell also spent time sparring with champion Lennox Lewis and the Tyson-esque David Tua, a rough and heavy hitting Samoan star that knocked out almost every fighter he faced. Ironically, Tua would have a major role in Bell’s future as a boxer.
In 1999, the two met for the USBA title. A victory for Bell would mean he’d receive a world ranking and be on the shortlist as a potential opponent for the heavyweight division’s elite. Unfortunately, he was on the wrong side of a first round knockout. A few bouts later, Tua made a significant amount of money to fight Lennox Lewis for the world title and went onto have a successful career. Bell was never the same, fighting just four more times and ending his career with a second round knockout loss. Between countless rounds of sparring with the Holyfield’s and Tua’s of the world and 28 professional fights, Bell took a tremendous amount of punishment.
Shortly after his career ended in 2002, Bell showed the scary effects that boxing can have on a former fighter. Between memory loss, poor balance, slurred speech and a lack of focus, his associate degrees in both medical billing and AutoCAD weren’t enough to help him find a steady 9 to 5 job. With countless job interviews leading him nowhere, the desperate Bell committed multiple street crimes for money and is facing jail time for grand larceny and burglary.
Due to his condition and instability, Bell was seen on multiple occasions by forensic psychologist Marc Janoson. He ran multiple tests on Bell, showing an impaired thought process and various other personality flaws. His time with Bell led to diagnoses of Pugilistic Dementia, Bipolar I Disorder and Bipolar II Disorder. Dr. Janoson recommended multiple neurological evaluations and medicines that could potentially rehabilitate Bell.
Still, Bell is facing multiple years in prison instead of a mental institution where he’d be served best.
“Gary Bell is a very sick man,” said Mitchell Rose, who is assisting with getting Bell the proper help. “He’s looking at multiple years in prison and while it’s a fitting penalty for most, prison isn’t what he needs. Gary’s boxing career caused severe mental and physical damage that could only be helped if he’s in an institution where he’s given the proper medication. There have been many instances where mentally incompetent suspects in criminal cases were put into the proper institutions and not standard prisons because that is the proper way to rehabilitate them. We’re going to continue fighting for Gary to get the help he needs and not just throw him into a prison where he’ll never have the chance to become a functioning member of society upon his release.”
To assist with Bell’s legal bills and assist him in getting the proper help, fans can donate via Paypal to firstname.lastname@example.org.