When boxer Micheal Valentin defeated Demetrius Wilson by unanimous decision the crowds at the Twin River Event Center were enthralled, but the youngster’s next move was even more impressive than his athleticism in the ring.
After Valentin’s victory On Friday March 2, fans expected his post-match address to celebrate his 4-0 undefeated record. Instead, the 18-year-old fighter pulled down his shorts to reveal the colostomy bag he’s been fighting with throughout his burgeoning career.
You can watch his inspirational revelation from 46 minutes into FIGHTNIGHT LIVE‘s footage:
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Posted by FIGHTNIGHT LIVE on Friday, 23 February 2018
After taking hold of the microphone, Valentin shocked the crowd by announcing he’d been dealing with the serious health problem for a long time.
Valentin, who chocked back tears, announced he would be taking a break from the sport and later revealed he was born with an intestinal disease called Hirschsprung’s.
It’s a birth condition in which nerves are missing from parts of the intestine, and means Valentin has to wear a colostomy bag. But that’s not stopped him getting into the ring and delivering stellar feats of sporting prowess and determination.
And still undefeated ? blessed 18 years old 4-0??? pic.twitter.com/1BmX9ELGwT
— Michael Valentin (@YourBling_Bling) February 26, 2018
I’m going to take a break after this fight. I know it’s going to hurt me, but, all my life, I dealt with adversity.
I was born with a uncommon intestinal disease named Hurchsbrung disease, I’ve never had the perfect life, but that’s what made me the man I am today.
I always fought with a colostomy bag. And for everybody who thinks I’m lying, look at me right now, I got a colostomy bag.
I’m a f***ing fighter. I fight for anything. After this fight, I’ll be going on to surgery. I’ll be out for about eight months, nine months to recover, but I’ll be back.
I’m going to recover. I’ll be strong and I’ll give it to anybody. I’m a f***ing warrior.
Valentin, who goes by the name ‘Bling Bling’, is not alone in his fight.
UNILAD met Kate Farley, a boxer with Cerebral Palsy and a whole heap of determination and athelticism.
You can hear her story of strength below:
Wanting to prove she is more than her disability with the help of her trainer Matthew Furnell, Kate created a new way to box, and has her eyes set firmly on the Paralympics.
Kate told UNILAD:
Boxing is so physical. I’m just so glad I found something I thought I’d never be able to do. But my disability has only made me strive that much stronger to do things people wouldn’t necessarily think I could do.
I’ve always been the most determined person anyone could possibly meet, I always give everything 100 per cent.
After all, disability does not define a person:
Valentin, from Providence, Rhode Island, will now undergo surgery on his intestines and should be back in the ring in around nine months.
We wish him all the best.
A former emo kid who talks too much about 8Chan meme culture, the Kardashian Klan, and how her smartphone is probably killing her. Francesca is a Cardiff University Journalism Masters grad who has done words for BBC, ELLE, The Debrief, DAZED, an art magazine you’ve never heard of and a feminist zine which never went to print.