West Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service have been invited to take a team of boxers over to New York City to take part in the annual boxing fundraiser ‘Thrilla in Camilla’ which supports the Tunnel to Towers Foundation charity.
The team, who are the only team in the UK to be selected, depart on July 6th. The show then takes place on Rockaway Beach in Queens on the evening of July 8th. Our firefighters will be taking on serving members of the Fire Department of New York (FDNY) under USA Boxing rules. They will be supported by their fellow firefighters cheering them on from West Yorkshire, watching the event on a live stream.
The Tunnel to Towers Foundation supports US veterans and first responders by helping families they leave behind with mortgage-free homes. It was set up to honour the sacrifice of Staten Island FDNY Firefighter Stephen Siller, who lost his life on Sept. 11, 2001, after running through the former Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel to assist at the World Trade Centre.
Team organiser and boxer Richard Fella said “We were originally scheduled to do this event in 2020 after a boxing event in Leeds caught the eye of the FDNY organisers over social media. It’s fantastic that it can now materialise, and we can send over a team to complete. The guys have been training very hard and are looking forward to the whole experience of boxing in New York, on the beach!!
“It’s for a great cause, and we feel so proud to be representing not only West Yorkshire, but all UK firefighters as the only British team attending this event.”
Firefight Boxing is run by Richard Fella along with Craig Wood. The team will be supported by retired Firefighter Alan Haque of KBW boxing and assisted by Rob Hart and Jodie Allen. Our team of boxers representing WYFRS is as follows;
Richard Fella: Crew Commander at Rawdon Fire Station, Matthew Whitaker: Firefighter at Fairweather Green Fire Station, Richard Simpson: Firefighter at Wakefield Fire Station, Hassan Abrar: Firefighter at Leeds Fire Station, James Scott: Firefighter at Rawdon Fire Station and Chris Jones: Firefighter at Illingworth Fire Station.
For more information about the boxing team visit the Firefight Boxing page on Facebook or the website www.firefightboxing.com.
Each boxer or coach has paid for their own flights, and the FDNY is putting on accommodation for those involved in the event.