Monday, June 23, 2008

'Speedy' Van Kirk Passes!

Sad news to report. Beltway Boxing fan favorite Eddie "Speedy" Van Kirk passed away on Sunday, June 22 at the age of 45.

Van Kirk, a native of Baltimore, was a popular 13-year pro who had a record of 27-9-2, 13 KO's. In August of 1989, Van Kirk won the Maryland State Junior welterweight title stopping Keith Grimes in the seventh round.

Other notable bouts include a loss to future world champion Vincent Pettway for the Maryland State Welterweight title on March 4, 1991 at the Baltimore (now 1st Mariner) Arena. Van Kirk faced two other future world champions during his career; Hector Camacho, Sr. and Vinny Pazienza.

Arrangements are forthcoming. BATB sends condolences to the Van Kirk family.


Jennifer said...

Thank you Mr. Williams fom his son Eddie Jr. and Family. How can we contact you??

Gary Digital Williams said...

Email me at

Once again, my condolences to the family.

Danielle said...

Just wanted to clarify that Eddie 'Speedy" VanKirk Sr. passed away on the evening of June 22, 2008. Thank you for your condolences.

Anonymous said...

how did Speedy die, Gary?

Excellent action fighter. Rest in peace. -- J.S.

Anonymous said...

p.s. -- Eddie Van Kirk fought on the very first Ballroom Boxing show, I do believe. He was a part of a very exciting time in Baltimore boxing. His fight with Vince Pettway at the Baltimore Arena was a big show, an event. Didn't Jake Smith fight on that card as well? Baltimore boxers had (and have) a reputation for toughness and heart. Eddie was known for all-out action. I still remember the tough bout with Kato Wilson at Crowne Plaza in Rockville on the old Don Elbaum series. He fought to the fringes of title contention, losing to the very good Vinnie Burgese at Harrah's when Atlantic City fights were still a big deal, the key to a successful career for so many East Coast boxers. Four wins later, and he was in against Vinny Pazienza on the Pazmanian Devil's home turf, and got stopped in five. After the loss to Pettway, Van Kirk beat Edwin Curet -- who had defeated Mickey Ward and fought some of the best -- and got a shot with Hector Camacho. Win or lose, that's a pretty good thing, to say you got to fight Camacho. Eddie was in there swinging, and that's how I'll remember him, a tough Baltimore kid wading in and throwing no matter who was in front of him. -- J.S.

Anonymous said...

Eddie was a good dude and could still fight at 45. He helped me in the end of my amature career. Baltimore Boxers will miss Eddie.

There will be a Wake held at Baltimore Boxing
506 1/2 S. Broadway
Baltimore, MD 21231
(Fells Point)

It is free and there will be food and drinks (feel free to bring your own stuff if you want)

Come join us in Eddie's Wake.


Anonymous said...

Sorry, the Wake will be held at 2 oclock on July 13th.


Jennifer said...

My father, Eddie "Speedy" VanKirks viewing is Thursday June 26th at Charles L Stevens Funeral Home 1501Fort AVE Baltimore, MD 21230. The viewing times are 3 to 5 & 7 to 9 with an 8pm Catholic service for him.

For any questions or details please contact me at

Jennifer VanKirk

Anonymous said...

Hi all,

Today I just found out about Eddie's passing.It broke my heart. I met Eddie down on Baltimores "BLOCK" Whether in the ring or out, Eddie went all out and you were blessed to have him at your back and have him as a friend. Jennifer and Eddie.Jr, my condolences to you and your family. You wouldn't remeber me as you were in diapers when I seen you.
I will say this about your dad and proudly. He was one of the last down town that you could consider as "good people" and in my day that meant you were thorough through and through. That really meant something in my day. Your dad was an awesome guy. God-speed to you and your family. An old freind of "Speedy's"

Big Tom

Sheila said...

My condolences to Eddies family. I'm sorry it took soo long but I still cant believe it. He was soo loving and had such a big heart. I know I have a wonderful angel watching over me. I miss him soo. My phone doesnt ring in WV anymore for me to hear WHOSE THE MAN, and I knew it was him.I feel fortunate to have had such a beautiful bond with him.I miss you !!!
Sheila in West Virginia

Anonymous said...

He was my real father despite me being different blood

Sugar Perry said...

Love and miss u

Sugar Perry said...

I just ran across this site its beautiful. I miss my husband dearly. He's boxing for god now

Gary Digital Williams said...

My continued condolences to you and yours!

November Storm said...

i am so sorry for the familys loss. i'm just now learning Eddie passed away. i lived in MD for a few years. i met him in Baltimore and became good friends until i moved to RI. he was a really good guy.