YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – From 1980 to 1985, WKBN First News reported weekly on the status of Ray “Boom Boom” Mancini, even daily leading up to a big fight. As the steel mills were shutting down, he was one thing Youngstown was really proud of. Now, Mancini is 60 years old, a grandpa and the star of a one-man show about his life.
During an interview with Mancini in the living room of his Poland home on Wednesday, it was story after story.
“You know, hanging out with Billy Crystal and Whoopie Goldberg at the time and I’m going, ‘This ain’t bad for a kid from Youngstown,'” Mancini said.
It’s those kinds of stories he plans on telling during his one-man show Saturday night at Warren’s Robins Theatre.
“You know, it’s funny, my ex-wife said, ‘Are you going to tell everything?’ I said, ‘Yeah. The good, bad and the ugly.’ I’m not going to give the gory details, no,” Mancini said.
Mancini is writing his show in a spiral notebook. His plan is to possibly take the show on the road.
“I make the joke, this could be an F and L, a first and last. It could be that or look, I get offers,” Mancini said.
Mancini turned pro in 1980 and the left-hander quickly became known for a lethal left hook.
He would go on to win the World Boxing Association and the North American Boxing Federation championships — the belts of which he has displayed in his house.
“I knew my style of fighting was not made for a long career. I sacrificed longevity to go in and make my score. Thank God I was able to get in, make some money and then get out,” he said.
There are no signs of Mancini’s boxing career in his living room. The biggest picture is his 2014 Santa Monica Beach wedding to his wife Tina.
But in the same room with the belts, there’s a painting and a few black and white photos, one with his parents and one at a news conference after a loss. They will all be in Mancini’s one-man show.
“It’s my journey, let’s put it that way. From Youngstown to New York to Hollywood and back,” he said.
“Stories from the Corner: A Night with Ray “Boom Boom” Mancini” starts at 8 p.m. on Saturday.
Tickets are $29 and can be purchased online or at the door.