Camacho's mother wants to take him off life support
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico -- Hector "Macho" Camacho will be taken off life support, his mother said last night, indicating she would have doctors do that Saturday. It was a decision the former championship boxer's eldest son opposed.
The boxer's mother, Maria Matias, told reporters outside the hospital where Camacho lay unconscious since being shot in the face that she had decided doctors should remove life support, but only after three of his sons arrived in Puerto Rico early Saturday and had a chance to see him a last time.
"I lost my son three days ago. He's alive only because of a machine," Matias said. "My son is not alive. My son is only alive for the people who love him . . . Until [the sons] arrive, we will not disconnect the machine," Matias said.
The former champion's mother has the final say in the matter, but his eldest son, Hector Jr., said he wants to keep his father alive.
"He's going to fight until the end. My father is a boxer," the son said.
Doctors have said Camacho is clinically brain dead from a shooting Tuesday night in his hometown of Bayamon. Camacho was shot as he sat in a car with a friend, 49-year-old Adrian Mojica Moreno, who was killed in the attack. Police spokesman Alex Diaz said officers found nine small bags of cocaine in the friend's pocket and a 10th bag open inside the car. Police reported no arrests as the investigation continues.
Hector Camacho Jr. lamented the violence that grips Puerto Rico, a U.S. island territory of nearly four million people that reported a record 1,117 homicides last year.
"Death, jail, drugs, killings," he said. "That's what the streets are now."
Camacho's sisters have said they would like to fly Camacho's body to New York and bury him there. Camacho grew up mostly in Harlem. He won super lightweight, lightweight and junior welterweight world titles in the 1980s.
Governor-elect Alejandro Garcia Padilla said: "The life of Macho Camacho, like other great athletes of ours, united the country. We celebrated his triumphs in the streets and we applauded him with noble sportsmanship when he didn't prevail."