YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) — It’s safe to say that heading into his first amateur fight in two weeks, 18-year-old Malachi Signore is not lacking any confidence.
“That’s how I do my body shots, like boom, boom and I push him out,” Signore said. “Then he has to get back in and boom, boom, I knock him out again.”
But just six months ago, his mother, Phyllis Signore, never could’ve imagined this.
“It’s something that he’s also wanted to do and I always thought, ‘I’m not sure, you know, with his disability can he really even box?'” she said.
In the video above, Malachi dawns a poster with his teammates depicting the event, called Fight To Unite 4: Fighting for Autism.
“I’m on the poster, but the knock is due in 5 seconds, then he’ll be knocked,” Malachi said.
It’s fitting that Malachi will make his debut at this event, during Autism Acceptance and Awareness Month, showing everybody that he’s no different than any other boxer.
“He trains just as hard, he listens, he does what we tell him to do and I’m really happy to have this show,” Youngstown Salem Boxing Coach Alicia DeFrank said. “Especially for him and especially for the cause of autism awareness.”
“Everybody’s been so accepting of him and encouraging and they just make him feel important,” Malachi’s mother said.
Now, as the days tick down, Malachi is really focused on one thing: putting on a show for those coming to watch him do his thing.
“I’m doing it for my school and my teammates, doing [it] for the love people that I love,” Malachi said. “My school loves me and they want to see me win the fight, not lose the fight, so they want me to win so I can win that belt.”
Malachi will finally get that chance to show off his work on Saturday, April 15 at El Jalapeno in Niles.