Cochrane boxing fundraiser looks to K.O. cancer
Thursday, Sep 14, 2017 06:00 am
Boxing enthusiasts laced up the gloves on Sept. 9 to support a great cause and support one of their own.
Rival Boxing held its first annual K.O. Cancer charity experience in honour of Matt Roberts, who was diagnosed with testicular cancer in 2014, and has since been through multiple therapies and surgeries. Roberts is one of the first members at Rival Boxing, and the event was held to honour his courage, and to raise money for testicular cancer organizations.
Twenty-four participants received personal professional training for 10 weeks before stepping into the ring for their first ever boxing match. Adrienne Elton, who recently moved from Southern Alberta, said she needed to be a part of this event for a number of reasons.
“I moved to town in January and saw the advertisement for it, I just thought it would be a great way to get out and meet some new people while raising money for a good cause. It was also a sport I’ve wanted to try, just never gotten the chance to do so,” Elton said. “I’m definitely happy to help put money towards a good cause like that. I think everybody knows somebody, or has family that has been affected by cancer in one form or another, so I think it’s a great way to get involved and give back.”
For others, the cause was a little more near and dear to their heart, such as Kevin McConnach, who is one of Roberts’ best friends.
“When I heard this event was going on, I thought it would be the perfect way to honour the battle he (Roberts) went through. It’s just incredible motivation to see how he kept his head up during his battle, the 10 weeks of training we were put under was nothing in comparison,” McConnach said.
The event has raised close to $10,000 and Rival Boxing owner Craig Wilson said the event couldn’t of gone any better.
“It went amazing. I was so proud of everyone that did it, and that Cochrane showed up and gave they’re support. I expected a couple of the fighters to drop out of training, but that didn’t happen with this group.” Wilson said. “They came in and worked hard, and showed up ready to fight.”
The event was a sellout, and the crowd gave off a vibe that the first time boxers fed off.
“The crowd was electric, and it was funny because people were saying it felt like we brought a little bit of Vegas to Cochrane.” Wilson chuckled. “The sport of boxing is sort of new to the town, so it was really nice to see people come out and show their support.”
Rival has already started putting things in motion to make this a yearly event, and while they’ve just begun talks, Wilson said there’s a lot of excitement.
“We’ve kind of just been drafting out ways to possibly make the event better. How we could raise more money, or find ways to get more people from the town involved.” Wilson said. “This year turned out so well, that we want to continue to make it an annual thing. Everyone here at Rival is very excited for what’s possibly still to come.”