April 5, 2012
by Airman 1st Class Jake Eckhardt
375th Air Mobility Wing Public Affairs
SCOTT AIR FORCE BASE, Ill. (AFNS) — Senior Airman Adam Hassan, 375th Communications Support Squadron, fought through two weeks of try-outs and three months of intense training to be announced the best boxer in the Air Force and one of the top 10 boxers in the U.S.
He had to compete against everyone who submitted a package to even get into the tryouts. He was then flown out to San Antonio, Texas to compete against 15 of the Air Force’s best to get on the Air Force’s six-person boxing team.
“I was confident in my skills,” Hassan said. “It just took a lot of willpower.”
Training for the Airman only got harder after he earned a spot on the team. Hassan left Scott weighing 157 pounds and came back weighing 16 pounds less.
“It was hell,” he said. “We had to work out three times a day, seven days a week.”
After three months of training, he flew to San Diego, Calif., to compete in the Armed Forces tournament. Hassan earned the silver medal losing only to a Marine who is currently on the Olympic team and ranked No.1 in the country.
“It was a good fight,” he said. “I had him hurt in the third round, but he had a lot more experience than me.”
Along with earning his rank as the second best boxer in the military, he also earned his spot in the Nationals at Colorado Springs, Colo.
“The Nationals were really fun,” he said. “I got a lot of experience by fighting some of the ‘top dogs’ in boxing.”
The New York native traveled in his younger years to compete in tournaments. In the five years that he has been boxing consistently, he has earned many awards such as the National Brown Gloves at age 19 and the Golden Gloves at age 20.
“I started when I was a kid,” he said. “Then I quit for a while, and I came back when I was older. I just stuck with it then. I’ve always liked boxing.”
Hassan said he feels like he could achieve more. Quitting isn’t a part of his plan.
“I hope to one day turn pro and become a world champion,” he said.
Hassan’s motivation behind his drive and focus was his friends, family and the feeling of victory.
“There is no better feeling than giving it your all in a fight and having your hand raised at the end of it,” he said. “Without my commander, Lt. Col. Donald Cloud, my supervisor, Tech. Sgt. Matthew Kilbreath and Mr. Steven Bommarito supporting me, I wouldn’t be where I am today.
“My family was proud when I told them the news,” he said. “Whenever my father hears I won a fight, it puts a smile on his face. I try to do that as much as I can.”
The quiet and modest boxer isn’t above giving advice to another boxer in need.
“You’ve got to stick with the sport and pay your dues,” he said. “Don’t get discouraged because you lose a fight. Boxing is one of those sports that you just have to put your time in.”