By Robert Coster
Jean -Baptiste Mendy of France, one of Europe’s most talented boxers in the 1990s, passed away from cancer yesterday at age 57. Mendy conquered both the WBC and WBA lightweight titles. He won the vacant WBC lightweight belt with a decision over Lamar Murphy (4-20-1996). He lost his title by split decision to Stevie Johnson (3-1-1997). He became the WBA lightweight champion by outpointing unbeaten titleholder Orzubek Nazarov (5-16-1998). Mendy lost his title to fellow Frenchman Julien Lorcy by stoppage (4-10-1999) and he retired the next year with an excellent record of 55-8-3, 31 KOs. Rest in Peace, Champ.