COLORADO SPRINGS — As we get closer to the Tokyo Olympics, News5 is starting to dig deep into the stories of the athletes who will be competing in Japan. Caroline Peters joins us with more on one USA Boxing athlete who is following in his father’s footsteps.
Growing up, Richard Torrez Jr. Looked up to his father who was a professional boxer. His dad actually competed in the 1984 Olympic Trials, so it’s no surprise that Richard has grown up with the dream of boxing on the world stage.
The superheavyweight does have world experience, having placed 5th in the 2019 Elite world championships. He’s also placed first in the 2020 Boxam Tournament and third in the 2019 Pan American Games. Richard isn’t only athletic though, he is smart. He graduated as his high school valedictorian, was a member of the chess club, and once placed first in a chemistry cup. Still, boxing is his first passion before wits. He says it’s a little disappointing he cannot have his father with him in Tokyo this summer but he is practicing a strong mindset.
“My dream, my goal, was after I won that gold medal, I’d see my dad in the corner, and go to him. But even though my friends, my family and my community can’t go and support me, I really feel like they were the ones who helped grow and shape the individual I am today, and so I am taking them with me. I am having them in the ring and so that kind of gives me a little comfort,” said Richard Torrez Jr., USA Boxing.
Richard says becoming an Olympian isn’t just his dream. He says his grandfather and father were both boxers, so he is going to bring all the pent-up energy to the ring this summer in Tokyo.
Richard says he’s dreamed of this moment for a long time and now that it’s almost here, he is finally going to prove what the Torrez family can do in Japan. And we will be rooting for him here in Colorado.
USA Boxing captain, Ginny Fuchs says boxing has saved her from obsessive-compulsive disorder. Since she was a young girl, Ginny says she recalls feeling the need to wash her hands and constantly be clean.
So, it might surprise some people that someone who wishes to be clean chose to pursue a career in boxing. Well, Ginny says boxing works as an escape for her mind. She says while she is boxing, she doesn’t think about the blood, sweat, or bacteria involved with the sport. She says she has always wanted to be an Olympian and when she is in the ring, she is knocking out her OCD and focusing on her goals of becoming a medalist in Tokyo. She says the delay for the 2020 Olympics did cause her to deal with her OCD in a separate way.
“Everybody’s wearing latex gloves and over washing and disinfecting, and that’s what I've been doing, or that’s where my obsession comes from, so I’m like, “Oh, I kind of like this, everybody’s kind of got a taste of my world.” But then the isolation, and having to be alone, is the bad part for me, because when I'm alone, I get stuck in my rituals,” said Virginia “Ginny” Fuchs, USA Boxing.
Ginny says it’s hard for her to get out of her rituals and behavior if she doesn’t have the support system, she needs with her. But she’s happy to be able to
Ginny says this is her third try to get to the Olympics and to finally have made it this far gives her an extra boost of motivation to come home with a medal.