A very sad ending to what was a still-in-progress story.
Jeffrey Fraza, a struggling boxer who competed on The Contender as "Hell Raza" back in 2005 and was looking to make a comeback, was killed early this morning when he was struck by an empty train on the commuter tracks in his hometown of Haverhill, Mass.
"He was a great kid. I love him like a brother. I'm kind of in shock," trainer Micky Ward, the retired pro who was played by Mark Wahlberg in The Fighter, told the Boston Herald. "He was going to try to make another run at it. It's just a shame."
Was Fraza's death an accident?
The case remains under investigation, but according to his friends, Fraza walked on those tracks regularly. And though he had struggled recently after being diagnosed with Chron's disease, which causes inflammation of the digestive tract, those close to him believe this was an accident.
"He was a good man," ex-girlfriend Sylvia Pastrana said. "He was training little kids at the Haverhill Boxing Club on High Street." And despite his health troubles, "he was fine and he was in good spirits."
Pastrana lived nearby with their 14-year-old son, Antonio.
Per the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, Fraza was on his cell phone when he was struck near Hale Street by a train inbound to Boston that had just made its last run into Haverhill for the night. He was found dead at the scene at 1:24 a.m.