Rocky Lockridge, boxer behind the ‘Best Cry Ever’ meme, dead at 60

danike567/YouTube

BTW

Rick “Rocky” Lockridge, former super feather-weight boxing champion and the man who inspired the viral “Best Cry Ever” meme, died Thursday due to complications from pneumonia and a series of strokes, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports.

“He had a good heart, and he brought himself back up from the bottom,” Perry Dawes, a friend and former sparring partner, told the Inquirer.

Lockridge was born on Jan. 10, 1959, and began boxing as a teenager. He became the world super feather-weight champion in 1984 and won 44 of his 53 fights as a professional boxer. He beat then-undefeated Roger Mayweather in 98 seconds during the first round of their fight.

After retiring in 1991, Lockridge fell on hard times. He separated from his wife and became addicted to cocaine. He suffered a stroke and, due to his addiction and medical bills, was struggling financially by 2009.

But things turned around for the champ after he appeared on the A&E reality show Intervention. Following an emotional moment with his sons, Lockridge vowed to get sober. It was during this interaction that he broke down wailing in tears. That moment became known as the “Best Cry Ever.”

The raw emotion captured people’s imagination and quickly became a meme.

https://twitter.com/AJColores/status/726163188576849920

Family, fans, and friends have been expressing their own grief online after learning of the boxer’s death—with many using his famous meme.

https://twitter.com/locktwin/status/1093498807843737600

https://twitter.com/LaidiesmanVega/status/1093709723151396864

Lockridge kept his pledge to his sons and stayed sober until his death.

“He made up his mind that he was going to conquer his addictions,” said Jacquie Richardson of the Retired Boxers Foundation, per the Inquirer. “He got his own apartment. He carried on a life drug-free.”

Richardson added that a memorial is being planned for Lockridge and that the New Jersey Boxing Hall of Fame has offered to pay for his funeral expenses.

READ MORE:

H/T the Philadelphia Inquirer

David Britton

David Britton

David Britton is a writer and comedian based in Rhinebeck, New York who focuses on internet culture, memes, and viral news stories. He also writes for the Hard Times and is the creator of StoriesAboutWizards.com.