“We forget as athletes that we break just like everyone else and that our lives are different outside of the ring.”-Eugene Hill
Dickinson, Texas heavyweight boxer, Eugene “Mean Gene” Hill spends his mid-mornings training for two hours at Savannah’s Boxing Gym in nearby Houston. The trip back and forth which he makes several times a week is different from the trips many commuters make each day to work. The time he spends training, last only for a few hours but every moment is precious to Eugene because at one point, he thought these moments would never happen again.
“I tore my rotator cuff in my last bout. I couldn’t even lift my arm above my chest at one point. I was literally a one armed man with two arms.” says Eugene. “It is a difficult thing to think you just won the WBF international Heavyweight Title and you may never get the chance to defend it. This may be it. I can’t even really explain how I felt after winning and afraid that I lost. Even after I had surgery, I was still scared that I may never return to the ring.”
Eugene who returns to the ring this March, for the first time since his surgery has put the both the injury and the fear behind him. “I haven’t fought in over a year and I have been training over time to catch up on missed time. I feel faster and more confident than I have in a long time. I feel like after everything, I can focus once again on my career and continue building a name for myself. I think being injured taught me one thing and that is we forget as athletes that we break just like everyone else and that our lives are different outside of the ring. When you can no longer punch, what does a boxer do? I’m glad that I don’t have to answer that question right now. I’m very thankful for that.”