DeMarco's legacy is an undying part of Boston's history. Training under Boston greats such as Frankie Waters, DeMarco was able to sell out the Boston Garden, breaking attendance records. Mayor Thomas Menino even honored DeMarco with a street, named after him, in Boston's famous North End. The street, which is perpendicular to Atlantic Ave, is named "Tony DeMarco Way".
Tony DeMarco's birth name is actually Leaonardo Liotta. To box in the league, the minimum age was 18. Liotta had to use the birth certificate of Tony DeMarco so that he could compete. DeMarco had his first professional fight when he was sixteen years old. It was October 21, 1948. He kayoed Mestor Jones in one round.
Tony DeMarco, despite winning many bouts to become champion, is best remembered for his two championship matches with hall of famer Carmen Basilio. Both fights were toe to toe slugfests with several ebbs and flows that kept the fans on their seats. Both fights took place in 1955, and both ended in the 12th round with DeMarco suffering a TKO.
In their first bout, DeMarco was the defending champion. He risked his title by taking on Basilio, who was the top ranked contender. Although Basilio prevailed, the fight was so exciting that the pair were rematched. The second fight was almost a carbon copy of the first with Basilio wearing down DeMarco, but not before a wicked DeMarco left hook had Basilio out on his feet. DeMarco was unable to capitalize on this advantage and lost the match on a 12 round TKO.
DeMarco has received many honors, including an induction in the Official National Italian American Hall of Fame in Chicago.