August 18, 2003 by

Alex Gong

36 comments

Categories: Business, Sports

agong.jpgAlex Gong, a world champion kickboxer, was murdered in San Francisco on Aug. 1. He was 32.

Gong was working out at the training gym he owned when he saw a dark green Jeep Cherokee hit his car and drive off. Still wearing his boxing gloves, Gong pursued the Jeep on foot. He caught up to the Jeep when it stopped at a traffic light; the driver then shot him in the chest and sped away. After a 12-hour stand-off with police, Rodger Wayne Chastain, the man who claimed to be Gong’s killer, committed suicide.

Gong was born in New England. He spent a brief time at an orphanage in India, then was reunited with his mother and transplanted to California. After graduating from San Francisco State University with a degree in business, Gong started studying karate, judo and tae kwon do.

In 1994, Gong discovered Muay Thai, a form of kickboxing. He took up the sport and eventually won several championships in the middleweight and welterweight classes. A dedicated competitor, Gong headlined fights at the MGM Grand and the Mirage in Las Vegas, and appeared on ESPN, HBO and the CBS TV show, “Walker, Texas Ranger” with Chuck Norris.

“Muay Thai kind of fits into the psyche of Americans, you know, like it has quick results and action and quick attention-getting scoring. And combat is about as real as sports get. When you have unlimited combat with class, rules, sophistication and actual talent, I think there is a true appreciation for that,” Gong once said.

Gong opened the San Francisco branch of the Fairtex Combat Sports Camp in 1996. It became the nation’s top Muay Thai training facility and the only one recognized by the World Muay Thai Council.

36 Responses to Alex Gong

  1. Joe Gonzalez

    Champion Gong: Although you are gone, you will never be forgotton. I just found out about this tragedy this week. THe sport has lost a true warrior. GOD BLESS YOU!

  2. Ben Murphy

    Alex you were a great freind, and a great fighter, I will miss your spirit in the ring, now its is just for us who must live on, you have your peace and place in our hearts forever
    Ben the Demon King Murphy Morrison

  3. LiNA LiN

    alex, you made a huge impact in my life without ever knowing it.. i can never thank you enough for everything that youve done for me.. i wear my fairtex shirt today showing my pride and love for Y0U.. ill never forget you alex.. i miss you.

  4. andy-ultimate gym muay thai new york

    Alex,you are gone, but your myth and your name is not the all muay thai world will always remember
    andy-ultimate gym new york

  5. Rick

    Watched some K1 This weekend, man could we use you back in the ring! You where the BEST I had ever seen, You still inspire me everday.
    Sadley missed and I never met you!

  6. jov cabanag

    he’s a great fighter…i was supposed to be sched to fight him for me debut in united states…i was sad when i heard the news that alex was murdered…

  7. Jim

    Alex I’ll miss you. You were taken from us far too soon and in such a senseless manner. I’ve watched many of your fights, training videos and read your articles. I felt like I knew you though we never met. I wish I could have been there to stop you from confronting this man like you did. I know you knew better. But it probably all happened so fast that you didn’t take time to think about it. We are reminded again by you our teacher, that we need to use restraint in all things envolving our emotions. It’s not easy. But we must. Too many nuts out there today.

  8. Vaughn

    It’s been two years now and I still have you in my thoughts. I had the pleasure of meeting you once. I’ve been a fan and followed your career just about from the start. My prayers are with you. Your biggest fan….Vaughn

  9. Chuck Gibson

    I never knew of this man, but I came to find out in a hard way. While doing family research, I discovered my nephew’s name as the killer. I can only express my sadness for the loss to fans and family everywhere.
    I have friends that are martial artists and called one of them who had seen him on tv. He said that he was a great fighter. It was a sad bit of information to pass on to a friend.
    Another thing that makes me sick about this is that I’m a detective for my Sheriff’s Department.
    Again, sorry to all for the loss.

  10. Ebone

    I just decided to punch in alex’s name and I found this link, it’s nice to know that even a little more than two years after his death he is still on people’s minds. I just got a book sent to me in the mail from the new fairtex in S.F. and they have a history section about them and not to my surprise did they say anything about Alex Gongs legacy as a fighter and as representing fairtex in San Francisco and Daly City. When you think of fairtex you think of Alex Gong !!!!! R.I.P. from Ebone representing the old fairtex ( 5th/Clementina and Daly City )

  11. chip hurst

    As a now aged muay thai fighter I will remember Alex’s reputation not only as a fierce warrior but also a nice guy that epitomizes what this country is about-dedication,work ethic, and love.
    God be with you Alex

  12. Daniel Townsend

    You were one of the blossoms of this world taken away by a harsh winter, you were warm hearted and I will always look to you for inspiration.

  13. Sukh

    Again i would just like to express my happiness that so many of us have not forgotten Alex as he was one of the greatest legends in todays world of muay thai, having only watched his fights on tv from london i didnt get a chance to meet him but felt as if i knew this man. Big loss to muay thai, will dedicate all my fights to him.

  14. Darren Barlow

    I was Alex’s student in SF i now live portland, OR. I was just thinking about him on this rainy day i actually think about him alot, I think it’s because of the way we lost him. he was the superman you could see with your own eyes. I havent trained since Alex’s death, maybe it’s time I dust off my gloves and find a gym. Alex you’ll be missed R.I.P.
    Darren Barlow from the 5th/Clementina crew

  15. Peo

    Just watched all your fairtex instructionals and some fights as i prepare for my next fight and learnt so much. I heared this sad story only today. Rest in peace, you won’t be forgotten! Thanks mate.

  16. Liang Sung

    I watched some of your fights and heard you’re gone last week.What a great warrior we lost!
    from your fan and friend Sung in Chongqing, China

  17. Stephen Ragan

    I just found out this horrible news tonight and my heart literally sank. I never knew him personally but I watched several of his fights on TV. It’s all hard to believe. My condolences go out to his family and may God rest his soul.

  18. Pon

    Never a day pass that Alex not in my mind or heart. His heart of gold he smile his determination and respect for all. When Alex only 19 I reconize the heart of champion. Not only the world Muay Thai Champion but my champion. We never gives Alex champion of my heart you will live in heart and mind forever. My student, my son, my best friend, love you to I die when I see you smile and we have long conversates again.

  19. danovis pooler

    Alex my long time freind whom had great trust in
    me as a trainer I truly miss his present,his freindship and the road we once began, always your
    freind Dee God Bless you.

  20. lynda

    I hope nobody forgets you. You were like the brother I never had. We had some epic disagreements over the years like any family but I wouldn’t change that. You are sorely missed. My mom and I think about you eveyr single day.

  21. mike

    I have been watching your fights on espn late nights over the past couple years, watching you fight got me started in muay thai. I just found out today that you were not with us anymore and had no idea this happened in 2003. Rest in peace Alex,you were a true warrior.

  22. Christian

    I was telling a friend your story today Alex. I trained with you for years and was there when you were taken from us. I still carry your trading card in my wallet. I still have not forgotten you and never will. I love you Alex!

  23. topito

    RIP Alex
    I am Thai. I just discovered your fights on sport channel recently.
    you had the most powerful Muaythai kick I’ver ever seen comparing to other foreign Muaythai fighters..

  24. NW Fighting

    First I want to pay tribute to the legent we lost. Really he was a mile stone. Muay Thai practitioner still now learning lot of techniques from this Muay thai legend. His contribution will never let him die in peoples mind and he would be the polestar in the Muay Thai world.

  25. Erik S.

    It’s been 7 years and I still think of him all the time. We spent alot of time together and I was with him just the night before he passed. He was one in a million and lived hard. Toughest guy in training but really nice outside the ring. You still live within me Alex.

  26. A Fan

    Alex Gong was a Muay Thai genius and he continues to inspire myself and others a decade after his passing. His memory will always be attached to some level of myth and mystique. Undefeated, talent rich and intelligent. He had everything it took to be a world champion. Tragic loss. My best wishes to his family and legacy

  27. joey

    Alex –
    I knew you briefly back in Franklin. You went on to live a helluva life in your short 32 years. I hope you are able to look down and see how many people you touched, inspired and have grieving for you. You certainly overcame obstacles that would have crippled lesser men and when a mans time comes – he is judged by “is the world a better place with or without him ?”
    Your one of those rare people that the only reason the world is better without you, is because of your lingering presence that still inspires people, teaches people and is an example to people and your absence gives everyone else a chance to catch up.
    So you get a “yes” on both questions.

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