Gov. Pat McCrory keeps a pair of former heavyweight champion George Foreman's gloves in his office as a reminder that one can come back.
The gloves were given to him by Foreman after he lost the race for governor in 2008 to Democrat Bev Perdue. McCrory said he was feeling down, and was especially bummed about losing Charlotte, a city which had elected him mayor seven times.
“Losing your adopted home town tears at your heart,” McCrory said during a commencement speech at Campbell University law school Friday morning.
But Foreman, saw that he was down. He sent him a pair of gloves. On one gloves was inscribed: “Patrick with this hand, I missed a lot but I kept swinging. Your friend George Foreman.''
The other glove mentioned that he had get over the people of Africa booing him when he lost a 1974 heavyweight fight to Muhammad Ali. It read: “I had to reach out and forgive Africa. They pulled against me in 1974. For you the best is yet to come.''
Foreman came back in 1994 to become the oldest world heavyweight champion and famous for his grill.
McCrory said the Foreman gloves were important to him in his decision to try again to run for governor in 2012 and they continue to be important to him in pushing for his programs.
“As you know the challenges we face in the state and in the nation are more difficult than we anticipated,” McCrory said. “Many are structural and will require fundamental change, the type of change that people tend to resist the most. I keep these gloves right near me...to give me a constant reminder to keep swinging.''