CARACAS, Venezuela — Venezuela President Hugo Chavez lamented the tragic death of Edwin Valero on Sunday, saying the troubled fighter who killed himself after slaying his wife had failed to defeat his biggest adversary drug and alcohol addiction.

Valero, famed for an impressive record of 27 straight knockouts and a huge tattoo of Chavez on his chest, hanged himself in his jail cell last week. The boxer, who was nicknamed “El Inca” in reference to an Indian warrior, committed suicide a day after he was arrested in the stabbing death of his 24-year-old wife.
“In his brilliant boxing career, giving it all for Venezuela, El Inca never knew defeat,” Chavez, one of Valero’s most vociferous aficionados, wrote in his weekly newspaper column. “But he couldn’t come to dominate himself.”
Hundreds of fans attended the fighter’s funeral in his hometown of El Vigia last week to bid him a final farewell.
The killing of Valero’s wife, Jennifer Carolina Viera, coupled with the boxer’s suicide, shocked many Venezuelans. read more