Pacquiao Volunteered At Las Vegas Orphanage, While Mayweather Spent $1.2 Million On Champagne - CVIEW NEWS

News, Updates, Human Angle Stories, Investigations & Research from the kaleidoscope of thorough bred journalists...

Breaking

Monday, 18 May 2015

Pacquiao Volunteered At Las Vegas Orphanage, While Mayweather Spent $1.2 Million On Champagne

After Historic Fight, Pacquiao Volunteered At Las Vegas Orphanage, While Mayweather Spent $1.2 Million On Champagne. Read The Inspiring Story Of The Real Winner.
After the historic fight, Manny Pacquaio, 36, didn’t stay for the festivities after his grueling twelve round battle with Floyd Mayweather. Bruised, but not broken, he had another fight on the line. It wasn’t covered by HBO. It wasn’t worth the record-breaking $300 million the pay-per-view event generated.
It was worth much more.
Changing into a crisp blue blazer and gray slacks, he’s snuck out the back of MGM Grand Garden Arena by his assistant David Sisson and into what would have been an inconspicuous Ford sedan, were it not for the dozens of Ferraris and Lamborghinis from the Mayweather entourage cluttering the lot.
Sitting back and wiping the still beading sweat from his forehead, he rubs a yellow button pinned to his lapel with the words “BELIEVE IN U” as Sisson navigates the packed Las Vegas streets.
“It breaks my heart that all people talked about was the money,” Pacquiao says, looking out the window to the neon lights left behind as Sisson picks up on the freeway. “I don’t just fight for the money. It was different when I was young and my family was still poor. But now, as I got older, I learned there’s more to life than wealth.”
mayweather-cash-pile
Floyd Mayweather at the casino
Just as he finishes, his phone vibrates. It’s a snapchat from Floyd Mayweather.
“Where u at Pac?” the caption reads, over a photo of Mayweather posing with several revealingly dressed blondes against a backdrop of drunken partiers, as if the whole city were there. You can almost hear the celebration before Pacquiao puts his phone away and looks out the window again.
“People today think life is about this,” he says, pointing toward the neon lit towers still peeking out from the Vegas strip that are like watchmen over the valley.
“In 1995, before my first big professional fight, my close friend Eugene Barutag was also an up-and-coming boxer. He said, ‘Manny, don’t you ever forget where you came from. If you forget that, it doesn’t matter how much you win. If you lose where you come from, you lose it all.’”
“That year his life was taken during a match. Every time I fight I wish I could go back in time to show him that I didn’t change.”
Sisson drives along the sand bordered road. There are few lights other than the oncoming traffic heading back into the city. The neon is far away now. The hotel towers once vainly standing fade into the night sky. The only gambling here is for the future of America’s youth.
Two lamps on the sides of the gate to St. Jude’s Ranch for Children seem to beckon the car from the darkness. From the chapel emerge small lights, frantically flashing and moving closer as Sisson parks the sedan near some desert plants. The rapid patter of small feet on the ground break up the quiet of the night as children rush up to the rear door, watching Pacquiao step out and pop open the trunk.
“It’s Manny!” the children shout.
Pacquiao’s smile shines from their flashlights as he and Sisson unpack boxes and set them on the ground.
You would think he were an ordinary delivery-man on route the way he casually carries the boxes into the chapel. As he walks back and forth to the trunk until it is empty, the mob of children follow him and wonder aloud what he’s brought.
“Maybe it’s some gloves,” says one boy, punching the air.
“I bet it’s jumping rope,” says one girl. “I love skipping. I can skip faster than Manny.” She hops giddily, kicking up a cloud of sand.
“Janice, you can skip later,” says Pacquiao, waving the cloud away. “Let’s get all this stuff inside first. It’s too dark to play outside.”
pacquiao and kids
Family is crucial to Pacquiao
The children pick up loose objects that have fallen onto the ground – boxing speed bags, boots, and gloves – as Pacquiao leads them into the chapel. Sisson helps one boy struggling to carry a large medicine ball straggling behind.
Inside the chapel, children find space anywhere they can, fascinated with their new toys.
“Show us how to play with this one, Manny,” says one boy holding up a small punching bag.
“Be careful with that, Stephen,” warns one of the orphanage directors.
But it’s hardly the time for caution. Pacquiao will be gone by sunrise to catch a flight to New York and from there one to the Philippines. With only hours left before his departure, he makes the rounds among the groups of children, showing them how to use the equipment that is at times comically large for their little hands and feet.
“Last time he almost missed his flight back,” says Marlene, a director at St. Jude’s. A crowd has gathered around Pacquiao who’s teaching the children how to mount the punching bag on a low hanging chapel beam. “The kids here look up to him, but if we don’t step in, they’ll never let him leave.”
“It’s been like that since 2001, when he first visited us. He wasn’t as famous then but he brightened the kids’ lives all the same and promised he’d return whenever he fought in Las Vegas.”
Lucky for St. Jude’s, Pacquiao has been back to fight more than a dozen times following his big break in 2001, when he beat then super-bantamweight champion Lehlohonolo “Hands of Stone” Ledwaba. He’s watched the children of St. Jude’s grow up to be confident young men and women who show the world the difference a positive role model makes.
The crowd cheers as Pacquiao shuffles his feet and launches a flurry of punches on the new bag. He steps aside to let the children try, correcting their form after each one tires: a hand raised so that the head is always protected, a chin tucked so that the blow is always minimized. His ‘students’ study his movements reverently, practicing when he individually tutors the slow learners. Perhaps it’s these moments of patience that reflect a sense of empathy learned only through hardship. Dropping out of school at age 14 to support his mother and family, and turning professional at age 16, Pacquiao had to fight to survive, literally.
young pac
A young Pacquiao
But the children seem to take his maturity and understanding for granted, not realizing how rarely it’s found in star athletes and celebrities today. Pacquiao seems to prefer it that way. He talks and moves as if he were merely resuming yesterday’s lesson that ran out of time. And to them, this is what a hero looks like: the unity of expectation and reality, an extraordinary man who is at all times his humble and gracious self.
The everyday character of his visit extends to the directors and staff. No one asks for or takes a selfie with the legend in their midst. They calmly savor the moment as they fasten gloves and adjust headbands for children eager to resume playing.
Although Sisson smiles when a group of kids show off their boxing combos to him in unison, he remains focused on Pacquiao’s itinerary. He waves at Pacquiao and points to his watch. It’s time.
Pacquiao tries to walk to Sisson but is held back. Two children hanging on to his legs insist he stays a little longer. One of the directors intervenes and asks the two children if they could show her some of the moves they learned, saying she is looking for some bodyguards. They let Pacquiao go and proudly snap into the routine they were just taught.
Sisson runs through the schedule with Pacquiao: meeting with sponsors, radio talk shows, press conferences. If they want to get through it all, they have to leave, now.
Pacquiao nods and turns back to the crowd of children.
“Kids,” he says, “I have to get going.”
“Awwww,” the children lament.
“One more hour,” pleads a small voice from the back of the chapel.
“I’m sorry, but David and I have to leave. But I will be back. Train hard and behave, OK?”
The children silently nod their heads.
“Alright,” says Pacquiao. “One last group hug.”
The chapel is filled with the clatter of bare feet on dry wood as the children rush to him. To escape their embrace might take another hour were it not for Sisson’s firm yet understanding reminder: “Manny, the contract says we have to arrive early at the interview to get ready. And I don’t think there’s room on the plane for everyone here.”
Pacquiao pats the children on their shoulders then slips through a gap in the mob. He and Sisson shake the hands of the directors.
As the two get into the car, the children line up near the gate and wave goodbye. The directors hold the hands of some of the children who try to get closer as if they could climb aboard. Pacquiao rolls down the window and sticks his head out to wave back. He waves until they can no longer be seen through the cloud of dust glowing red from the car’s tail lights.
Pacquiao settles back in his seat but before he can close his eyes, his phone vibrates. It’s a tweet from Floyd Mayweather: “$1.2mil on Armand de Brignac #TheMoneyTeam #WinnersWinLosersHaveExcuses”. Pacquiao shakes his head. Armand de Brignac champagne can cost over $100,000 per bottle.
floyd tweet
Floyd Mayweather’s Tweet
Pacquiao swipes away from the tweet to a photo of him and the children at St. Jude’s. He’s crouching down in the middle, giving the V-for-victory sign with his fingers as the children on both sides clap or have their hands high in the air.
Pacquiao smiles and puts his phone away. It’s his first chance to rest after his match. But in the fight for America’s youth, he still has many rounds left, rounds that you might think he has to fight by himself. When his fellow athletes are more concerned with making the cover of Sports Illustrated or obtaining endorsements for fad products, a selfless star such as Pacquiao reminds us of the power sport has to change lives.
They arrive at the airport and unpack the luggage from the car. Pacquiao looks back down the road and says: “Habang may buhay, may pag-asa.” It’s a fitting Filipino proverb. As long as there is still life, there still lies hope.
And with Pacquiao in their corner, the children of St. Jude’s will have all the hope they need to succeed. Together, they’ll take down the toughest opponents the world throws at them. Together, they’ll have what it takes to go the distance. For one round and for the rest of their lives

No comments:

Post a Comment

Pages