Edward Mills "Eddie" Machen (June 15, 1932 – August 8, 1972) was born in Redding, California, on June 15, 1932. He was one of 6 children of a rural mail carrier. Machen dropped out of high school and became an amateur boxer. However, after just 3 bouts he was arrested and convicted of armed robbery. After his release, he became a professional boxer, determined never to return to prison again.  His 64-bout career began on March 22, 1955, and he went on to win his first 24 bouts. He was highly rated and fought most of the big names of his era.