Wednesday, April 16, 2014
By Michael G. Seamans firstname.lastname@example.org
(Continued from page 2)
Skeet Wyman works the pads with Brandon Berry, who travels three days a week about 225 miles round trip to train at Wyman's Boxing Club in Stockton Springs.
Staff photo by Michael G. Seamans
12TH ANNUAL FIGHT TO EDUCATE PRO-AM BOXING EVENT
Thursday, Sept. 12
Verizon Wireless Center, Manchester, N.H.
Silent auction starts at 5:30 p.m.; boxing begins at 8 p.m. Event raises money for at-risk and disadvantaged children
Six-fight card: three amateur, three professional
The event is headlined by two welterweight matches:
Danny "Bhoy" O'Connor, of Framingham, Mass., will fight Raul Tover, Jr., of McAllen, Texas
Chris Gilbert, of Windsor, Vt., will fight Anthony Chase, of Providence, R.I.
Brandon Berry, of West Forks, will fight Jesus Cintron, of Springfield, Mass.
Sometimes a friend drives him, because he’s so wiped out from training. Friend Shaun Bell, home on leave from the Navy, was with him in July when Berry suffered rib contusions at the hands of sparring partner Trayson Owens, a 23-year-old mixed martial arts fighter.
Bell took him to Redington-Fairview General Hospital in Skowhegan, because it was on the way home.
Berry said the 15 hours on the road a week for about six hours of training is worth it.
His relationship with Wyman is much more than fighter and trainer.
“Our relationship is like family,” Berry said.
When Berry isn’t training at Wyman’s, he’s in his own gym in the former service garage at his family’s general store. He built his own gym, complete with a ring, with the help of the West Forks community.
A trainer and his fighter
The fact Wyman is missing much of his right arm has never limited the quality of the training.
Wyman doesn’t allow himself any limitations either.
“Honestly, I don’t even notice it anymore,” Berry said. “I have never had to speed up or slow down for him. I’m always trying to catch up.”
Wyman sees the fact that he can only box one-handed as an advantage.
“Brandon didn’t have a jab when he started training with me,” Wyman said. “All I have is a jab.”
It didn’t take long for Wyman to see that Brandon “The Cannon” Berry could be a successful fighter.
“I knew within a year that he was the one,” Wyman said.
Berry finished runnerup in the New England Golden Gloves finals in February. In January, Berry defeated Julio Perez in a unanimous decision at Boston’s TD Garden.
Berry won his first professional boxing debut in May, defeating Bill Jones of Berwick at Skowhegan Area High School.
The hours in the gym, the hours on the road, the hours together, have all led up to the moment Thursday, when the pair walk into the Manchester ring together.
“We are as close as a trainer and fighter can be,” Wyman said. “It is much more than boxing. I’ve never been this close to someone other than my son.
“It’s neat with this sport, boxing,” Wyman said. “I have never been involved with baseball or basketball so I don’t really know how they go.
“But in the boxing game when you become friends, you become friends for life,” he said. “And allies for life.”
Michael G. Seamans — 861-9260