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This Latino Is Bringing The U.S.A. Its First Medal For Boxing In 8 Years

Thanks to an impressive win this past week, 20-year-old Nico Hernandez is bringing the U.S. its first medal for boxing since the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.

Win or lose, the Wichita, Kan., native is set to bring home at least a bronze medal. But Hernandez has much higher aspirations.

Hernandez began fighting his way to the Olympics at the age of nine, when his father, and coach, took him to a local gym.

Nico’s first sparring experience left him bloody and bruised…but he was hooked.

To achieve his Olympic dream, Nico has to make sacrifices that most people his age will probably never understand.

https://www.instagram.com/p/j-7a8rkV2_/?taken-by=nicomhernandez

Nico is extremely close to his family.

And they’ve supported and encouraged his passion for the sport.

But competing and training often takes him away from those he cares about most.

However, it’s this level of dedication that has taken him to start his career with an amazing 25 wins in a row.

Nico would eventually lose a match, but the biggest loss Nico faced came in 2014. An accident on the job took the life of his friend, Tony Losey, a fellow boxer. He was only 22 years old.

Tony and Nico trained together for years, but their bond was much deeper.

They were like brothers.

Tony’s death affected Nico so profoundly, he took time away from the sport he loved to grieve.

Nico considered walking away from boxing. Eventually, he decided the best way to honor Tony was to continue pursuing the dream they both shared.

“When I’m in my corner praying, I know he’s right there with me. And I know he’s looking after me, watching over me.” Nico said to the Los Angeles Times.

This Friday, everyone will be there rooting for Nico as he fights the biggest match of his career.

Tony will definitely be there.

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