Name: Rene De Vos
Alias: Little Fox
Birth Name: Rene Steyaert
Hometown: Antwerpen, Antwerpen, Belgium
Birthplace: Antwerpen, Antwerpen, Belgium
Pro Boxer: Record
During World War I, Rene DeVos was a spy for the Allied Forces, carrying messages from France through the German lines in Belgium--according to a Dec. 2, 1928 article in New York's The World newspaper. American boxing manager Lew Burston brought him over to the United States from Europe in 1927. Burston sold his contract for $25,000 to Anthony J. Drexel Biddle. "Jimmy Bronson, boxing's bow-tie beau, was brought in to front for Biddle. For DeVos' first fight under Biddle sponsorship, Bronson decided to be the good samaritan to Jess McMahon, promoting in the Commonwealth in New York. Jess was interested in Angel Clivele, a Puerto Rican, and Jimmy figured to kill two birds with one stone. But Clivele liked to kill DeVos, as they say. Angel, punching like a devil, knocked out Rene in one round." Ring Magazine: December 1953, p. 25.
In late 1933, while in Algiers, DeVos was shot in the right arm by an Arab during a brawl and reportedly was lucky to have survived, as the bullet had severed an artery. Newspapers reported his arm shrank over an inch in diameter and that he had lost all control over its movement. Predictions were that he would never fight again, but he had five more bouts before retiring from boxing.
- Brother of Jules Steyaert