Melson Returns May 8!

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Melson to return against Ruiz May 8!

For Immediate Release

New York, NY (April 7, 2015) – Boyd “Rainmaker” Melson returns to the ring following a fifteen month layoff when he battles fellow popular New Yorker Mike “El Cangri” Ruiz in the ten round main event of a DiBella Entertainment and New Legend Boxing card Friday, May 8 at the Hilton Westchester in Rye Brook, NY.

Tickets starting at $40 are on sale now at http://teamfighttowalk.com/tickets-for-boyd-melsons-may-8-fight/.

Out of action since February 2014, Melson has an excellent professional record of 14-1-1 with four wins by knockout. The Manhattan resident, who is one of the biggest box office draws in the Big Apple, was slated to face contender Glen Tapia last June at Madison Square Garden but withdrew after suffering a shoulder injury in training. In his last bout, the 2003 West Point grad outpointed Donald Ward while fighting through a stretched brachial plexus. The injury, which a ringside doctor said he’s never seen in more than 30 years of working with fighters, caused temporary paralysis in Melson’s right arm during the last five rounds of the match.

A Long Island based Puerto Rican, Ruiz has a solid 17-8 professional ledger with 9 victories by knockout. In July 2012, Ruiz scored the best win of his career, traveling to Atlanta, GA to knockout title contender Paul Delgado in his hometown. Having faced the aforementioned Tapia, often-avoided Martin Wright (twice) and contender Charlie Ota, Ruiz is Melson’s most experienced opponent to date.

“Ruiz is a tough fighter with a lot of experience,” Melson said of his next foe. “This is also my first ten rounder and in order for me to get to the next level, I’ve got to defeat him impressively. I know I’ve been out of the ring for awhile but at this stage of my career it’s time to step up. Even with the inactivity on paper, I’ve spent a lot of time in the gym so I expect no ring rust come May 8.”

Melson also has personal ties to the area, which further inspires him to put forth a career best performance.

“The high school I graduated from is right down the road. (Team Fight to Walk Founder) Christan Zaccagnino lives a mile away from the venue and we’re expecting a great turnout on fight night.”

After his fight with Ruiz, Melson will continue his pledge to assist in curing chronic Spinal Cord Injuries by donating 100% of his purse to Team Fight to Walk in support of America’s first trial of its kind.

Team Fight to Walk is comprised of Melson, Zaccagnino, former Rutgers football player/ESPY honoree Eric LeGrand, two division world champion Paul “The Punisher” Williams, two-time cruiserweight champion Steve “USS” Cunningham, Austin “No Doubt” Trout, title contender DeAndre “The Bull” Latimore, Edgar “El Chamaco” Santana, Sonya Lamonakis, Hector “Machito” Camacho Jr., WBA Middleweight champion Danny Jacobs, WBO Junior Middleweight titlist/2008 US Olympian Demetrius “Boo Boo” Andrade and fellow 08’ Olympian Shawn Estrada along with prospects Sid “The Messenger” El Harrak, Jeff “TNT” Spencer, Denis “Da Momma’s Boy” Douglin, Will “Power” Rosinsky, Floriano “Italiano” Pagliara, Danny “Little Mac” McDermott, Vinny “The Lion” O’Brien, Ahmed “Prince of Egypt” Samir and Delen “Sniper” Parsley.

For more information or to make a donation, go to teamfighttowalk.com. All specific questions about the nature of the Clinical Trial to cure Spinal Cord Injury can be sent to bamstrong1981@gmail.com. Fans can also interact with Melson via Twitter @BoydMelson or Facebook.com/Boydmelson

Team Fight to Walk begins Pushups for Paralysis!

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New York, NY (January 27, 2015) –Captain Boyd “Rainmaker” Melson and Team Fight to Walk have started the Pushups for Paralysis challenge. Melson created the challenge to assist fundraising efforts for America’s first clinical trial to help cure Chronic Spinal Cord Injuries.

Yesterday, Melson, who donates 100% of his purses towards the trial, posted a video where he completed ten pushups. After finishing the pushups, Melson called out other members of Team Fight to Walk including Danny Jacobs, Marcus Browne, Riddick Bowe, Anthony Mason, Christan Zaccagnino, Paul Williams and Eric LeGrand to complete the challenge.

Like the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, Pushups for Paralysis’ goal is to raise both funds and awareness through social media. Each participant is challenged to do 10 pushups, call out others to participate then donate $10 to teamfighttowalk.com. If they are unable to complete ten, participants are asked to donate an additional $1 for each incomplete pushup. For example, if only six pushups are completed, the donation would be $14. The goal is to raise $5,000,000 so the trial could take place in 2015 following delays due to funding issues.

“The world saw how powerful the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge was and we all participated” said Melson. “More than $100 million was raised for ALS and everybody was talking about it. I’m challenging everybody out there to complete 10 pushups and donate $10 to Teamfighttowalk.com to help cure paralysis. Through widespread efforts, I have no doubt that our goals can be met. Ultimately, America will benefit by seeing hundreds of thousands of people confined to wheelchairs from Spinal Cord Injuries walking again following the trials.”

For more information on teamfighttowalk, go to teamfighttowalk.com. All participants are asked to use the hashtag #pushupsforparalysis.

A video of Melson’s Pushups for Paralysis can be seen at http://teamfighttowalk.com/push-ups-for-paralysis/

Melson to receive “Heart of a Champion” Award

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Melson to receive “Heart of a Champion” Award

For Immediate Release

New York, NY (January 15, 2015) – Humanitarian and junior middleweight boxer Captain Boyd “Rainmaker” Melson will receive the “Heart of a Champion” award from St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital Sunday, January 25.

The award will be given during a special fundraiser for St. Jude titled “NY Champions for St. Jude” taking place at O’Neill’s of Maspeth in Queens, NY. More than 2,000 people are expected to attend the event, which will include a good amount of professional athletes from various sports, celebrities, and overall supporters of St. Jude and its mission. The event will be hosted by New York Rangers legend and Hockey Hall of Famer Brian Leetch.

Founded in 1962 by entertainer Danny Thomas, the goal of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is to advance cures and means of prevention for pediatric catastrophic diseases through research and treatment. Through the years, St. Jude has focused significantly on providing care for children suffering from different forms of cancer. Consistent with the vision of Thomas, no child is denied treatment based on race, religion or family’s ability to pay.

Since turning pro in 2010, Melson’s received mainstream attention in and outside of the boxing world for donating 100% of his fight purses towards helping find a cure for Spinal Cord Injuries in the United States. Melson, along with Christan Zaccagnino, founded Team Fight to Walk and recruited notable professional athletes to join the fight to cure paralysis. The past two years, Team Fight to Walk’s hosted their annual fundraising gala “Fighting for the Cure,” that helped raise additional significant funds. Due to their admirable efforts through Team Fight to Walk, Melson and Zaccagnino were profiled by various large media outlets.

“This is an incredible honor.” Melson said of the recognition from St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. “I met a young girl a few years back, who was 10 years old at the time, and her name is Lilly; I call her my lil’ flower. When she was a few months old, she developed Astrocytoma where she developed a cancerous tumor along her spinal cord. When the surgeons removed the tumor, she was left paralyzed. She was not even a year old, and she is now 14. She has only known life looking up from a wheelchair. Cancer paralyzed her.”

“Well Lilly my lil’ flower, cancer paralyzed you, and you are so very special to me, that I am proud to risk my life in the ring just so one day selfishly, I can hug you while you are standing. This award I am receiving is a gift from me to you as my way of saying thank you for being in my life. Little do you know lil’ flower that you have helped me never give up.” Melson closed by saying that “like St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Team Fight To Walk’s goal is to bring hope to families and show those that are suffering that hope is light in the darkness.”

Tickets to the fundraiser are available www.eventbrite.com/e/ny-champions-for-st-jude-tickets-14424781911?aff=eac2 and the event takes place from 1-8 pm. All adult ticketholders can enjoy a complementary buffet, live music, silent and live auctions and a live raffle drawing. Children under 12 will receive the buffet, unlimited juice or soda and family friendly entertainment.

For more information on Team Fight to Walk or to donate, go to Teamfighttowalk.com. All questions about Team Fight to Walk or Spinal Cord Injuries can be emailed toBoydmelson@Teamfighttowalk.com.

Melson Mourns the Loss of Bernie Lenahan

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New York, NY (January 11, 2015) – Bernie Lenahan was a rare breed by today’s boxing standards. Not only was he dedicated to the sport, spending countless hours at New York’s Mendez Boxing Gym, Lenahan was an honest family man that built special friendships with his fighters.

Having worked with various fighters in the Big Apple, Lenahan learned his craft by spending time around New York’s greats. He guided multiple fighters to New York Golden Gloves titles and played a key role during his four years as Boyd Melson’s assistant trainer and cutman. In multiple fights, Lenahan prevented tides from potentially turning by effectively closing Melson’s cuts between rounds. He was also in the gym guiding Melson as he prepared for battle.

Shockingly, Lenahan passed away last week, leaving behind a wife, daughter, granddaughter, two sisters and a brother.

“I spent more time with Coach Bernie these past four years than any other man on this planet,” said Melson. He made me his. My heart broke when I heard the news, and a part of it will be broken until my time is up in my own body. It wasn’t just because of how he loved me and how much I loved him that this hurts me so much, but it is because when Coach passed, hundreds and hundreds of people lost something very special.”

“Coach Bernie offered an unconditional kindness, acceptance and welcoming that you only find in children. When you see a child, you know that you won’t be judged, and you will be offered love for no other reason beyond that child just wanting to love you. At some time in almost all humans’ lives, we tend to lose this. We stop loving everyone, and we start judging everyone. With Coach though, we felt safe as seeing him put instant smiles on our faces because we always felt loved and welcomed. He made you feel that he truly wanted you there and really cared about you. I wish everyone alive on this planet could have met Coach Bernie to experience that feeling. At the end of every practice for the past three years, I hugged Coach Bernie, kissed him on the side of his forehead, thanked him for training me that day, and said I love you to him. He would smile and quietly say “love you too.” Forever and a day, I thank you Coach for this.”

Donations to the Lenahan family can be made by going to https://www.crowdrise.com/BernieLenahan/fundraiser/jamescoppinger

Paul Williams Joins Team Fight to Walk!

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New York, NY (December 7, 2014) – Three time world champion Paul “The Punisher” Williams is the newest member of Team Fight to Walk.

A fixture on the pound for pound lists and a fan favorite, Williams had an outstanding 41-2 record with 27 wins by knockout. Williams, a two-division titlist, became paralyzed from the waist down following a motorcycle accident in May 2012. Even after becoming a paraplegic from the accident, Williams maintained his signature smile and a great attitude.

Recently, Williams connected with Team Fight to Walk co-founder Boyd Melson in New York City, where he helped Williams find speaking engagements. During their time together, Melson took Williams to Rutgers University to meet Dr. Wise Young. He showed Williams patients treated during clinical trials in China. Williams saw the patients walking following a surgical procedure that enabled their axons to regenerate. Young is planning to conduct the same trials next year in the United States. Amazed by what he saw, Williams immediately joined Team Fight to Walk.

“Being a member of Team Fight to Walk is an incredible feeling,” said Williams. “Regardless of how I felt, people were telling me that I was never going to walk again but after meeting Boyd and Dr. Wise Young, you can’t tell me anything! I saw people with Spinal Cord Injuries walking again and their cords regrowing. It’s amazing how God works because he brought all of us together and I’m confident as ever that I’ll walk again.”

Melson is also overjoyed about having Williams on board and knew it was only a matter of time until the two connected.

“From the day I heard about Paul’s accident, I tried to get in touch and let him know there was hope. Thankfully, we were able to connect and I showed him the incredible results from Dr. Young’s clinical trial in China. He’s an important member of the boxing world who can help our outreach tremendously. Like (Team Fight to Walk founder) Christan (Zaccagnino), Paul’s life changed in a split second but now he knows that results of trials overseas means there’s plenty of hope for both of them. I believe that Christan and Paul will walk again once the clinical trials take place in the United States.”

For more information on Team Fight to Walk or to donate, go to Teamfighttowalk.com. Fans can contact Paul on Twitter @1paulwilliams. All questions about Team Fight to Walk or Spinal Cord Injuries can be emailed to Boydmelson@Teamfighttowalk.com.

Melson to Speak at United States Military Academy!

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Melson to Speak at United States Military Academy!

For Immediate Release

New York, NY (October 26, 2014) – Junior middleweight boxer, West Point grad and charitable figure Captain Boyd “Rainmaker” Melson has been invited to speak at a leadership development series at the United States Military Academy at West Point Monday, October 27.

For the leadership development, Melson will host a one hour interactive discussion with a group of approximately 40 high ranking cadets that excel academically and have peer leadership positions.

Melson graduated from the USMA at West Point in 2003 with a degree in psychology and put on a pair of boxing gloves for the first time as a plebe (freshman) for a required course. After joining West Point’s boxing team and excelling in the squared circle on an international level, he was selected as an alternate for the 2008 United States Olympic Boxing Team, but withdrew due to an injury. During his senior year at West Point he met Christan Zaccagnino, who became paralyzed from the waist down after a diving accident when she was 10. The two quickly became close and Melson’s ultimate goal in life is to see her walk again.

With Zaccagnino as his inspiration, Melson turned pro in 2010 and has donated 100% of his fight purses to Teamfighttowalk.com and Justadollarplease.org to help find a cure for Chronic Spinal Cord Injuries. To further assist with fundraising efforts, Melson and Zaccagnino hosted the “Fighting for the Cure” gala the last two years, raising a significant amount of money in the process.

“This will be one of the greatest and most proud moments of my entire life,” said Melson, who has been featured along with Zaccagnino on HBO Real Sports, ESPN.com, Yahoo and Sports Illustrated. “I’m an extremely proud West Pointer and my boxing trunks have “West Point 03” on them for a reason. It’s an incredible honor that they thought of me for this event because there are so many West Point graduates worthy of the opportunity.”

 

Team Fight to Walk to host Second Annual Gala!

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New York, NY (September 30, 2014) – Junior Middleweight boxer Boyd Melson and Christan Zaccagnino, founders of Team Fight to Walk, are proud to announce their organization will host the second annual “Fighting for the Cure” benefit gala Thursday, October 16 at 6:15 pm in the Beckwith Pointe in New Rochelle, NY.

Tickets and sponsorship packages to “Fighting for the Cure” are available by going to teamfighttowalk.com or calling 914-497-5727. All donations are deductable per IRS regulations.

In May 2013, Team Fight to Walk held their inaugural fundraiser at BB King Blues Club in Time Square that featured a special act by world renowned comedian Artie Lange along with heartfelt speeches from Boyd Melson, Dr. Wise Young, former Rutgers football player Eric LeGrand, Christan Zaccagnino and boxer/cancer survivor Danny Jacobs. Last year’s event raised $100,000 towards a clinical trial and research of Chronic Spinal Cord Injuries.

Since meeting at a social event in 2002 while he was at West Point, Melson’s dedicated much of his life to helping Zaccagnino. At ten years old, Zaccagnino became paralyzed from the neck down following a diving accident. Since turning pro in 2010, Melson’s donated 100% of his purses from 15 of his 16 matches towards Spinal Cord Injury Research through Justadollarplease.org and Team Fight to Walk, 501c3 charities. Melson and Zaccagnino’s story has received a significant amount of national attention, as the two have been featured on HBO Real Sports, ESPN.com, Sports Illustrated, Yahoo, NY1 and various newspapers.

They also recruited a team of boxers to support the cause either by donating or promoting. The fighters include world champion Demetrius Andrade, former titlists Steve Cunningham and Austin Trout, 2008 Olympian Shawn Estrada and contender Will Rosinsky amongst many others. Even with all of the hard work and tireless efforts, Team Fight to Walk must still raise a significant amount of money before they can move forward with the trial that could changes the lives of hundreds of thousands of people.

On the 16th, guests will get to see performances by comedians Gilbert Gottfried, Jayson Cross and Damon Rozier. Former New York Knicks star Anthony Mason, world champion boxers Danny Jacobs and Demetrius Andrade, former champion Junior Jones and unbeaten contender Frank Galarza will all be on hand throughout the evening to support the cause and spend time with ticketholders. This special event also has a blackjack table, silent auction, DJ, live music, open bar and guest speakers throughout the evening. Dave Diamante, voice of the Brooklyn Nets, will emcee the “Fighting for the Cure” gala.

“I’ve seen the way the world positively reacts to certain causes through social media and there are a lot of people out there that need help with different issues,” said Melson. “I’m calling not only on the boxing world but the general public to help in whatever way they can with Team Fight to Walk and our “Fighting for the Cure” gala. Our 2013 gala was a great success and we need to top donations in 2014 in order to potentially change the lives of hundreds of thousands of Americans suffering from Chronic Spinal Cord Injuries. Christan, myself, the rest of Team Fight to Walk and our loyal supporters have put in a tremendous amount of time to assist with efforts but there’s still a lot of work left to be done. If you aren’t able to make it on the 16th, please consider making a donation of any amount or purchasing a sponsorship page if you run a business. This will go a long way and your assistance can have a major impact on the lives of others.”

In association with the 501 (C) 3 nonprofit Justadollarplease.org, Melson and his best friend Christan Zaccagnino created Team Fight to Walk, whose mission is to raise awareness within the boxing community as well as the entire nation about the importance of bringing Clinical Trials to the United States to help cure Spinal Cord Injuries. Team Fight to Walk is comprised of Melson, Zaccagnino, former Rutgers football player/ESPY honoree Eric LeGrand, two-time cruiserweight champion Steve “USS” Cunningham, Austin “No Doubt” Trout, title contender DeAndre “The Bull” Latimore, Edgar “El Chamaco” Santana, Sonya Lamonakis, Hector “Machito” Camacho Jr., WBO Junior Middleweight titlist/2008 US Olympian Demetrius “Boo” Andrade and fellow 08’ Olympian Shawn Estrada along with prospects Sid “The Messenger” El Harrak, Jeff “TNT” Spencer, Denis “Da Momma’s Boy” Douglin, Will “Power” Rosinsky, Floriano “Italiano” Pagliara, Danny “Little Mac” McDermott, Vinny “The Lion” O’Brien, Ahmed “Prince of Egypt” Samir and Delen “Sniper” Parsley.

For more information or to make a donation, go to teamfighttowalk.com or Justadollarplease.org. All specific questions about the nature of the Clinical Trial to cure Spinal Cord Injury can be sent to boydmelson@yahoo.com.

MRI confirms Melson’s Tear; Treatment set for tomorrow!

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New York, NY (July 28, 2014) – An MRI confirmed that junior middleweight and West Point graduate Captain Boyd “Rainmaker” Melson suffered a torn supraspinatus. Melson, 14-1-1 (4 KO’s), tore his supraspinatus, which is part of the rotator cuff, preparing for what would’ve been the biggest bout of his professional career against Glen Tapia at Madison Square Garden.

This marks Melson’s third tear since he started boxing, one of which forced him to give up his alternate slot in the 2008 Olympics. Thankfully, his injury won’t require surgery, and he’s receiving platelet-rich plasma (PRP) treatment tomorrow. For the treatment, a small amount of blood is drawn then spun in a centrifuge machine to separate the plasma. The plasma holds the growth factors that the human body uses for healing, and by spinning the blood, the doctor will have a concentrated medium of the body’s growth factor. This is then re-injected into the location of the injury. The PRP treatment followed by therapy should help Melson recover fairly quickly, though the initial post-treatment stage is rough.

“The PRP treatment is really going to help but it’s brutal at first,” said Melson. “The first 2-3 days, even the slightest movement causes extreme pain in the shoulder. This will be my third time having Dr. Andrew DeMann working on me. He works miracles and I can only hope for the same result.”

An update on Melson will follow.

In association with the 501 (C) 3 nonprofit Justadollarplease.org, Melson and his best friend Christan Zaccagnino created Team Fight to Walk, whose mission is to raise awareness within the boxing community as well as the entire nation about the importance of bringing Clinical Trials to the United States to help cure Spinal Cord Injuries. Team Fight to Walk is comprised of Melson, Zaccagnino, former Rutgers football player/ESPY honoree Eric LeGrand, two-time cruiserweight champion Steve “USS” Cunningham, Austin “No Doubt” Trout, title contender DeAndre “The Bull” Latimore, Edgar “El Chamaco” Santana, Sonya Lamonakis, Hector “Machito” Camacho Jr., WBO Junior Middleweight titlist/2008 US Olympian Demetrius “Boo” Andrade and fellow 08’ Olympian Shawn Estrada along with prospects Sid “The Messenger” El Harrak, Jeff “TNT” Spencer, Denis “Da Momma’s Boy” Douglin, Will “Power” Rosinsky, Floriano “Italiano” Pagliara, Danny “Little Mac” McDermott, Vinny “The Lion” O’Brien, Ahmed “Prince of Egypt” Samir and Delen “Sniper” Parsley.

For more information or to make a donation, go to teamfighttowalk.com or Justadollarplease.org. All specific questions about the nature of the Clinical Trial to cure Spinal Cord Injury can be sent to boydmelson@yahoo.com. Fans can also interact with Boyd on Twitter @boydmelson

Melson Injures Rotator Cuff; Tapia Fight Off!

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New York, NY (July 17, 2014) – Junior Middleweight Captain Boyd “Rainmaker” Melson has been forced to withdraw from his Saturday, July 26 bout against contender Glen Tapia.

Melson, who was in the best shape of his professional career and prepared in an extended training camp, believes he tore his left rotator cuff Tuesday during one of his final sparring sessions. A 2008 Olympic Alternate selection, the West Point grad gave up his spot after suffering the same injury. He’d also had his left rotator cuff operated on twice in the past, including in 2008 after tearing it.

“I felt it stretch when I was throwing a punch and I immediately knew something wasn’t right,” said the dejected Melson. “I tried to work through it but the pain only got worse. First, my shoulder started to throb then it got cold. Since I hurt my rotator cuff and had surgery twice in the past, I know what a tear feels like.”

Even though he had a feeling what just took place the second his shoulder started hurting, he was hoping the pain would go away. Unfortunately, it didn’t.

“I didn’t want to believe it because I’ve worked incredibly hard and understand the significance of the Tapia fight. Not only was it a dream of mine to fight at Madison Square Garden, but a victory over Tapia would’ve put me in position to start earning significant money for Team Fight to Walk. This is truly devastating and I am heartbroken, especially after what happened during my last fight. I’m very emotional right now and don’t know what the future holds.”

All tickets purchased from Teamfighttowalk.com will be refunded.

In association with the 501 (C) 3 nonprofit Justadollarplease.org, Melson and his best friend Christan Zaccagnino created Team Fight to Walk, whose mission is to raise awareness within the boxing community as well as the entire nation about the importance of bringing Clinical Trials to the United States to help cure Spinal Cord Injuries. Team Fight to Walk is comprised of Melson, Zaccagnino, former Rutgers football player/ESPY honoree Eric LeGrand, two-time cruiserweight champion Steve “USS” Cunningham, Austin “No Doubt” Trout, title contender DeAndre “The Bull” Latimore, Edgar “El Chamaco” Santana, Sonya Lamonakis, Hector “Machito” Camacho Jr., WBO Junior Middleweight titlist/2008 US Olympian Demetrius “Boo” Andrade and fellow 08’ Olympian Shawn Estrada along with prospects Sid “The Messenger” El Harrak, Jeff “TNT” Spencer, Denis “Da Momma’s Boy” Douglin, Will “Power” Rosinsky, Floriano “Italiano” Pagliara, Danny “Little Mac” McDermott, Vinny “The Lion” O’Brien, Ahmed “Prince of Egypt” Samir and Delen “Sniper” Parsley.

For more information or to make a donation, go to teamfighttowalk.com or Justadollarplease.org. All specific questions about the nature of the Clinical Trial to cure Spinal Cord Injury can be sent to boydmelson@yahoo.com.