ROCS of Manchester continues pursuing goal of sending fighter to 2016 Olympics
By Christian Mysliwiec - Staff Writer
Manchester - posted Fri., Jul. 5, 2013
The Ring of Champions Society in Manchester is a nonprofit organization that not only trains young boxers, but provides the athletes with guidance through its mentoring program. The star of ROCS is Mykquan “Mikey” Williams, who is aiming to compete in the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
Williams and his coach, Paul Cichon, have just returned from the 2013 USA Boxing Junior Olympic National Championship, held from June 26 to June 29 in Mobile, Ala. Williams battled his way through four of the five tournament days, but did not win the final match. He will try again next year to qualify for Rio.
Williams' next fight is the Ringside World Championship, taking place in Independence, Mo., during the first week of August. This will be a momentous fight for Williams as he defends his record – he has won the Ringside World Champion Belt for the past three consecutive years.
Last year, he represented the United States in his fight for the belt from a boxer from Australia.
“Each one of these events is a step closer to his goal,” said ROCS President Kate Nicholas.
Sending Williams to last month's Junior Olympics in Alabama cost ROCS about $3,000. Many of the families of the youths that ROCS serves are not able to financially back these trips, and so the nonprofit works tirelessly to raise the funds to give its fighters these opportunities.
The latest fundraiser, “Bling for Boxers,” was sponsored by MCC at Main on Wednesday, July 3. Lia Sophia Jewelry and Mary Kay Cosmetics products were for sale, with all proceeds going to ROCS. Nicholas hopes to repeat the event annually. She describes it as “a girls’ night out to support our boxers.” Other businesses and organizations contributed to the event, such as the Jacobson Family and Highland Park Market. “It's really been a community effort here,” said Nicholas.
ROCS's goal, first and foremost, is to support its youth through the mentoring program. But Nicholas also considers it her duty to help Williams with his boxing career. “It's up to us to get the word out, and tell the town that we really have an exceptional athlete here,” she said. “As far as athletes go, this kid is the real deal.”