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Saturday, June 16, 2012 - 11:11pm
DOWNTOWN EL PASO- More than 165 injured soldiers enjoyed the Julio Cesaer Chaves Jr. and Andy Lee fight all thanks to "Operation Hope.”
The Wounded Warriors program was treated to tickets for the boxing match as a symbol of appreciation for their bravery fighting for our country.
Soldiers with The Wounded Warriors program say they're grateful.
This event is just one small way the community continues to show their appreciate for the sacrifices the soldiers make to keep our country safe.
From the front lines to sitting ring-side at The Sun Bowl, wounded warrior Adam Moralez says it's a real treat meeting some of boxing's greatest.
"Freddy roach, you know you have Roy Jones Jr. and the fact that we have a big event in El Paso. It’s probably one of the biggest events in El Paso since Oscar dela Hoya came down, which I also went to,” said Moralez.
Lupe Contreras is the announcer for Saturday’s fight. He says that he's grateful staff in town for the boxing match are able to meet those who've served our country.
"This gives us a way to meet them, greet them, see their faces. You know, talk to them face-to-face and just basically let them know our appreciation and we have a great night here in El Paso,” said Contreras.
165 wounded soldiers were treated to lunch at Oasis in downtown El Paso, and then each of them were given tickets to the match.
"It's a great way for everyone to show their appreciation for what all of these guys have done. Of course there’s nothing we can really do to thank them or thank them enough for their sacrifice. One of my favorite quotes is you know 'I've never seen so many who have sacrifice so much and ask for so little in return,’" said Contreras.
Contreras says he's thankful the fight wasn't moved to a different city after alleged security threats prompted the chancellor of The University of Texas system to initially cancel the event.
"I like to thank El Paso. They've always been a tremendous boxing city. They always come out. They always support especially our Latino fighters, the Mexican fights in general, and without the Mexican fans support, our support doesn't exist,” said Contreras.
Moralez says even though some might only see it as a boxing match, to wounded soldiers it's a sign of gratitude.
"The side effects it has on people like us. We have wounded warriors that get to meet with the fighters. Get to meet with the promoters. It's just a good event all around,” said Moralez.
Announcer Lupe Contreras also says the fight wouldn't be the same if it were to have been moved to other city in Texas because of our close proximity to Mexico.