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Staying Positive

The Story of the `The Real' Paul Banke

Paul Banke


An Olympic hopeful who scaled the heights of professional boxing to become world champion in 1990, within five years Paul Banke was homeless, destitute and had contracted the AIDS virus through an uncontrollable lifestyle. After three decades of drug abuse, Banke became clean and sober in 2014, providing a role model for those on a similar path.
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"She has put us on notice that we talk about race by not talking about it"

The Guardian

A member of the USA's stellar 1984 Olympic boxing team, Paul Banke then scaled the heights as a professional to become world champion in 1990. Unfortunately, throughout his career, he was at the mercy of his secret mistress - drugs. As part of the celebrity slipstream, Banke often had free access to heroin, crystal meth and cocaine. Best remembered for his epic trilogy with Daniel Zaragoza, drugs overtook him and Banke soon became a forgotten champion. Shortly after retiring in 1993, he was homeless and destitute. Having not eaten for three days, Banke found himself lying in a dumpster in Vegas, ecstatic at finding a partially consumed cheeseburger. Arrested for grand theft auto in 1995 he was urged in jail to take an HIV test, due to sharing needles. He had contracted full-blown AIDS. Miraculously, after three decades of drug abuse, Banke turned his life around in September 2014 and became clean and sober. Now once again warmly embraced by the boxing fraternity, he shares his story to inspire and deter those on a similar path.
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Book publisherPitch Publishing Ltd
Publication date30 Sep 2019
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