(MAY 13) MERRILLVILLE,
IND - The Gary P.A.L. Program was the starting point for some
of the world's greatest fighters including former world champion
Angel Manfredy and the current WBC International Super Lightweight
and NABC Lightweight Champion "Merciless" Mary McGee.
Both of whom were in attendance along with another 100 fight fans to
watch an amateur fight card dubbed "The Comeback." This event could
have never happened if it wasn't for the hard work of Coach John
Taylor and donations from Octavius James' One In A Million Inc.
The gym has boxing
posters clattered all over the walls showcasing some of the
sport's biggest fight cards, but not too long ago the walls were
covered in water that was as high as the ring and mold that had
built up from the flooding that stunned the region destroying
most of the furniture that once sat inside the gym.
"It was a shame to see such a legendary place on the verge of
disappearing, that gym and coach (John) Taylor are the heart of
boxing in Gary," said Octavius James, C.E.O. of One In A Million
Inc. Taylor presented McGee with a plaque that gave thanks to
James and One In A Million Inc. for the funds they donated from
their fight card "SLUGFEST 2009."
"I was so sorry that I couldn't be there to accept that plaque,
because that means more to me than any award I could ever
receive," said James. "To give kids from the city I was raised
in a chance to do better with their lives is such a special
honor for me."
"With Octavius and One In A Million helping us rebuild our gym
and their donations, it really helped make this a success," said
Taylor. "I'm so excited about this card, because people came out
and the fights have been great; it's just been amazing."
One of the future stars of boxing given a chance to step into
the recently refurbished ring was Portage 15 year-old Alexis
Carrasco. Carrasco was making his amateur debut and ended it
with a bang and a 1st round TKO. "I was training at One In A
Million before coming here and to know that this is where Mary
and Angel got their starts means a lot and it was coach Taylor
that helped them get to where they are now," said Carrasco.
Octavius James' One In A Million Inc. gets back to business with
the "Tinley Park Rumble". Tickets can be purchased at VIP $100,
VIP ringside $75, ringside $50, and general admission $30 and
they are available from any Ticket Master location at (800)
745-3000, (866) 438-7372 or TicketMaster.com.
The Holiday Inn/Tinley Park Convention Center, which is just 25
minutes from Northwest Indiana, will open doors at 7 p.m. with
the first bout at 8 p.m.