Flint, MI (WJRT ) — In three weeks, Linden’s Joey Spencer will be looking to add to his perfect record in his professional boxing career – 6 wins with 6 knockouts.
Already with a strong supporting cast he’ll be adding one more in his corner in Minneapolis.
11-year-old Dei-On Wright of Flint thought he was just meeting the boxer Saturday afternoon, but was surprised when Spencer asked him to join his team for his April 13th fight.
“It was good but I want to see the fight,” said Dei-On. “And I’ve never been on a plane so I don’t know what that’s going to be like.”
Fighting is nothing new to Dei-On. When he was just five months old, he was already in the fight of his life.
His grandmother, a former nurse, noticed something didn’t seem right and he was rushed to hospital, where shocking news awaited.
“I took him to Hurley and they said they had to do emergency surgery right then and there,” said Maurice Wright, Dei-On’s father. “It was a 50/50 chance he lived after the surgery.”
Dei-On had Wilms tumor, a type of childhood cancer in the kidneys. At the time, he weighed just 12 pounds while the tumor accounted for 7 of those pounds.
His kidney had to be removed but Dei-On recovered and after treatments won his fight against cancer.
The young boxer is flying the cancer survivor and his father to Minneapolis for the fight and Dei-On will be included in everything with the team, including the walk out, in ring and locker room.
Spencer said that type of toughness in his corner will help with whatever he faces.
“You have to be somewhat of a tough guy to be boxing, but it’s a whole different story I’ve got someone half my age that’s been through twice as much as I’ll ever be in as far as the situation of my entire life,” said Spencer.
A day away from celebrating his 19th birthday, working with kids and Children’s Miracle Network is always something he had hoped his career would allow him.
“Just knowing that it’s so much bigger than boxing and it’s a great thing to recognize people who have through struggles in their life to try to help them have a good time but also raise awareness for other kids,” said Spencer. “He’s a survivor but there’s other kids who are still in the fight.”
Spencer said proceeds from his Fight Night t-shirts will be donated to Children’s Miracle Network.