Friday, February 14, 2014

Michael J. Wagner, MD Senator and Owner of Michael's Eighth Avenue, Passes at 72!

(photo by Kenneth K. Lam/The Baltimore Sun)

Michael J. Wagner, a 20-year Maryland politician and the owner of the venue that housed one of the most successful boxing promotions in Beltway Boxing history, passed away from cancer on February 13.  Senator Wagner was 72 years old.

Sen. Wagner was a native of Baltimore and grew up in Anne Arundel County.  He was elected to the Maryland House of Delegates in 1974 and served from 1975-1977. Mr. Wagner was selected by the Anne Arundel County Democratic Central Committee to fill a vacant Senate seat.  He served in the Senate from 1977-1979 and again from 1983-1994.

However, for local boxing fans, Sen. Wagner will be remembered as the owner of Michael's Eighth Avenue, the home of the legendary Ballroom Boxing promotion from 1995-2010.  Wagner's son, Scott, headed the promotion that had it's own television distribution network and local radio show.  Sen. Wagner also was a founder and president of the Anne Arundel County Sports Hall of Fame.

Along with his son, Scott, survivors include Sen. Wagner's wife of 52 years, Carol and his other son, Mike, Jr. 

After just about every Ballroom Boxing card, I would go into Sen. Wagner's office -- he preferred to stay in the background and let Scott be the front man -- but you never met a warmer or nicer guy.  He always had a nice word for me and you could always see the pride in what Scott was doing. 

To Scott and the rest of the Wagner family, I send my deepest condolences.


Anonymous said...

Very sad to learn of this news.
The Wagner family's tribute to and support of our nation's Wounded Warriors (Iraq / Afghanistan Vets) at the fights was their way of saying THANKS to the folks who fought "THE BIG FIGHT" for our Nation! (as Scott would always say) We Vets will never forget that! May Mr. Wagner's spirit and soul Rest in Peace. Fight Doctor (J. Spears)

Keystone Boxing said...

Our condolences to the Wagner family. Mr. Wagner set the blueprint for how to run a successful pro boxing operation and was a pillar for Maryland boxing. He will be greatly missed. Digital, please pass along any info you receive on the services, thanks.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Wagner was always a very gracious and kind gentleman. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family.

Don Risher