Genaro "Chicanito" Hernández, born on January 10, 1966, in Los Angeles, California, had an illustrious career in the world of professional boxing. Known for his skillful technique, determination, and resilience, Hernández left an indelible mark on the sport, becoming a champion in his weight class and inspiring aspiring boxers around the world. Hernández's boxing journey began at a young age, fueled by his passion and natural talent for the sport. He trained rigorously, honing his skills and developing a distinctive style characterized by his speed, agility, and precision in the ring. As he rose through the ranks, his talent became increasingly evident, and he quickly gained recognition as a formidable opponent. In 1991, Hernández had his breakthrough moment when he challenged and defeated the formidable Azumah Nelson to become the WBC Super Featherweight Champion. This victory solidified his status as one of the top fighters in his division and marked the beginning of a remarkable championship reign. Throughout his career, Hernández faced some of the most skilled boxers of his time, engaging in memorable battles that showcased his tenacity and determination. One of his most notable fights came against Oscar De La Hoya in 1995. Despite ultimately losing the match, Hernández's performance demonstrated his resilience and fighting spirit, earning him respect from fans and fellow boxers alike. Hernández's dedication to his craft extended beyond his own success. He served as a mentor and role model for aspiring boxers, sharing his knowledge and experiences to inspire the next generation. His commitment to the sport and his willingness to give back to the boxing community made him a beloved figure in the boxing world. Unfortunately, Hernández's career was cut short due to a hand injury that forced him to retire in 1998. Despite this premature end to his time in the ring, his legacy as a champion and a skilled boxer remains intact. He left an indelible impact on the sport, showcasing the importance of skill, strategy, and perseverance in achieving greatness. Beyond his achievements inside the squared circle, Hernández was known for his humility and sportsmanship. He carried himself with grace and dignity, earning the admiration and respect of fans worldwide. His contributions to the sport of boxing extend far beyond his accolades, leaving a lasting impression on the boxing community and inspiring future generations of fighters.
After retiring from boxing Hernández was diagnosed with stage four rhabdomyosarcoma of the head and neck, a very rare form of cancer, and one which Hernández's insurance would not cover for treatment. Although Hernández collected several large purses in his career, including $600,000 for his final fight against Mayweather, he was not able to afford his expensive treatments and benefits were held to assist in paying what insurance would not cover. Top Rank Promotions, who promoted Hernández, footed Hernandez' bills for chemotherapy for a number of years, until Hernandez died, also having him brought to and from the chemotherapy sessions. In mid 2009 it was reported that Hernández' cancer was in remission but in early 2010 the cancer had returned and Hernández was undergoing treatment.
On June 3, 2011, it was announced that Hernández would stop chemotherapy treatment. Hernández died from cancer on June 7, 2011, at the age of 45. Floyd Mayweather paid for Hernández's funeral expenses out of appreciation that Hernández gave him his first world title shot and didnt have too.