In the ring for his final bout: Murdered Puerto Rican boxer Christopher Rivera propped up against ropes at wake

The shot 23-year-old wanted people to remember him for his boxing career

Antonia Molloy
Saturday 01 February 2014 16:48
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Mourners comfort one another next to the body of Christopher Rivera
Mourners comfort one another next to the body of Christopher Rivera

As final farewells go, it was an unusual one.

A murdered Puerto Rican boxer was memorialised at his wake by being stood up in a makeshift boxing ring, which had been set up in a community centre of a San Juan public housing complex.

Christopher Rivera was clad in sunglasses, boxing gloves and a yellow-and-black boxing uniform, as relatives said their goodbyes.

Police say the 23-year-old was shot dead on 26 January in the city of Santurce, but no one has been arrested.

Marin Funeral Home Vice President Elsie Rodriguez told the Associated Press on Friday that it took them several hours to create the scene. She said Rivera had told his relatives that if he died, he wanted his boxing career acknowledged at his funeral.

The funeral home is well-known for having previously created other thematic wakes, including one featuring a deceased man riding his motorcycle.

Rivera had a 5-15 record in the 130-pound weight class.

Additional reporting by Associated Press

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