Fighters Represent USMC in Boxing Exhibition

Fighters Represent USMC in Boxing Exhibition

Marines from Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort competed in the Marine Corps and Chevrolet Freedom Fight exhibition at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C. April 14.

Lance Cpl. Keandre Blackshire, Cpl. Malik Collins, and Cpl. Oubigee Jones fought in the exhibition on behalf of the Marine Corps Boxing Team and two of the three Marines emerged victorious.

“We were invited to Camp Lejeune to fight in front of an audience of retired and current boxing legends as well as retired Marine Corps generals,” said Collins, an administrative specialist aboard the air station. “It was a great experience and we were able to learn a lot from it.”

In order to prepare for a fight, the Marines had to work on eating right and strengthening their bodies and minds.

“We are up at 5:30 a.m. just to start our first workout of the day,” said Jones, an administrative specialist aboard the air station. “We always train together to motivate each other and push each other to our limits. We like to work out three times a day to maximize our potential to grow and work on our techniques. However, working out is only part of the training. We have to watch what we eat and make sure we maintain our weight class. I lost 23 pounds just for this fight which meant watching my calorie intake and sometimes going straight to the salad bar while my friends are eating wings.”

In order to attend the fight, the Marine’s chain of command had to approve of their participation which meant sacrificing manpower in their work sections; a small price to pay to for their Marines to sharpen their warrior mindset.

“I have seen these Marines working out before work, during lunch, and after work,” said Master Sgt. James Williams, the SNCOIC of outbound for the Installation Personnel Administrative Center. “I can see the drive these Marines have and the will to fight and the will to keep fighting. As a Marine Corps Boxing Team alumni, I would be honored to see these Marines continue that tradition of excellence and hard work.”

For many Marines, playing a sport is a way of relieving stress or a good way to exercise. However, these three Marines have made boxing their life and want to keep elevating their status in the sport.

“You can play basketball, football, and soccer but you cannot play boxing,” said Collins. “When you train for boxing, it’s a whole different mentality and workout. You have to utilize your entire body instead of just specific muscle groups. When you are in that ring it’s just you and everything you have worked for. Only you bring home that victory and only you are the reason for a loss. We want to keep improving ourselves and if they stand up the Marine Corps Boxing Team again, we will be able to represent the Marines Corps and win. But for now, we are honing our craft and working toward the 2024 Olympics where we can represent not only the Marine Corps but the entire United States as well.”

Originally published here>>

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6 comments


  • Bill Walter, Cpl.

    My Dad boxed in high school up in Michigan. He also boxed in the Corp during WWII. He won Golden Gloves in the bantamweight class. He said he weighed 115 lbs. soaking wet! I still have his belt buckle. It had a red,white and blue ribbon belt with the buckle attached. Some little Marine to be wore it out. The buckle is ingraved, Champion First Marine Division. Awarded by National Boxing Association. In the middle are 2 Boxers and below them is the EGA. After Guadalcanal he went to Australia for R&R. His buddies got him to box an Aborigines man to make some money. The guy weighed 175 lbs., Dad is still 115 or less. 4 or 5 punches later the native is out cold. Dad said his first punch was to the guy’s nose to water his eyes and the last was an uppercut for the knockout. He boxed a few more times before the had to go back to work. Dad liked to tell these kind of stories rather than the bad stuff. He’s guarding the golden gates now. Love ya Dad, Semper Fi


  • CPL Joe Green USMC Retired

    How about Jeff McCracken? Use to feed both Marine Corps & opposing boxing team late chow after matches were over, 1977 – 1979 at MCB Dining Facility #5, as I remember they were served some pretty good chow! Semper Fi


  • Gary Nash

    Jack Mennis left a two word reply to the story about Marine boxers. Yes, I remember Ken Norton boxing at Camp LeJeune in ’66. A name not quite as famous, but also an outstanding boxer, was Art Redden. Some thought that he may actually go on to bigger and better things than Ken Norton.


  • Jack Mennis

    Ken Norton


  • Bobby Yarbrough, GySgt USMC (ret)

    These men have some big shoes to fill when it come to boxing. Any one Remember Leon Spinx. Yeah I do I arrested him in the early 70s at Camp Lejeune for being drunk in public. And I mean drunk. But a gold medal winner in the olympics and finally a world heavy weight champion. Those were big shoes.


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