Wrestling and boxing matches can be exciting on television, but there is nothing like attending a match in real life. On April 30, One Hit Promotions and Triangle Kickboxing Promotions are bringing Fayetteville a chance to do just that. And Still I Rise is bringing 15 amateur bouts and 10 professional fights to the Crown Coliseum.
“I compare it to T.V. Everyone has seen Rocky and MMA fights on television, and it’s just like that but real. It is up close and personal, and it has a real Vegas excitement and atmosphere. Its always a must see because you never know who is going to win or who is going to get hit. It is always like wow, don’t blink you might miss something,” says Miree Coleman “the Pink Panther” Coleman, a professional fighter who will be appearing in the event.
Coleman is one of Fayetteville’s own. His boxing career began to take off while he was stationed at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. As an amateur, he won many accolades both within the military and the general community. His connection to this area and his military experience can be seen in the deep personal meaning of his chosen name. “The Pink Panther is pink because my mom is a breast cancer survivor and I fight for breast cancer awareness. And the Panthers is a unit in the 82nd that I deployed with, twice. Once to Iraq and once to Afghanistan, so my name really has meaning to it,” he explained.
For Coleman, his professional boxing career is about a lot more than putting on his gloves and fighting. It is also about fighting for a cause that is close to his heart: breast cancer awareness and transparency in charities.
“The boxer that I most look up to is Muhammad Ali because of the effect that he had on the country. Everything that he did, whether it was good or questionable, the whole world knew about it. I’m trying to get on that level and I can say the things that other people can’t and then maybe someone that matters can take that point of view into consideration and do something about it. A lot of people donate to charities for breast cancer, but we don’t know where all that money goes. I’ll bring that up. Of all that money we raise, I want to give some to the women who are fighting it so she can put gas in her car and get to her appointments,” he says.
Inspired by such an incredible athlete, Coleman seeks to be an inspiration for others himself. He often accepts invitations as a public speaker and goes out of his way to share his experiences with others. His advice, though tailored to his profession, holds true to anyone chasing a dream and searching for success. “I always say they should try and push themselves,” he said. “If you win or lose, there are always going to be naysayers. Add that to your positive motivation and continue to push for your dream. Be ready for your chance because you have to grab it when it comes.”
Doors open at the Crown Coliseum at 2:30 p.m. with the amateur bouts. The professionals should take the stage around 7 p.m. This is a family-friendly event and tickets begin at $30. They can be purchased online through the Crown Coliseum website.