At 15 Wallace left his home in Creighton Mines, Ontario, hoping to find work on Canada’s west coast. On his way he stopped in Brantford and was introduced to Frank Bricker and never made it out west. He began boxing in 1944 and turned professional in 1951. He won 30 bouts in a row and held the British Empire Games title for 2 years. His highest achievement came in 1957, when he was ranked third in the world.