By STEPHANIE UJHELY I firstname.lastname@example.org
Published: January 19, 2015 3:00AM
Dreams may come and go, but the ones meant to come true will.
Nick Myers III always wanted to box in the Olympic games, thus his decision after graduating from Alliance High School in 1995 to enter the U.S. Army. His father was business partners with boxing trainer Lorenzo Scott, so Nick decided to take up boxing in ninth grade after getting his start in karate.
“I made the U.S. Army boxing team for 41⁄2 years and competed in the 2000 Olympic trials but lost,” Myers explained, adding that he has no regrets. “Boxing taught me control, self-discipline, self-respect, hard work and dedication to the craft.”
After serving 16 years, 10 months and one day in the U.S. Army — most of it as a chaplain’s assistant — Myers retired in November 2012 and began to plan the rest of his life.
Alliance Municipal Court Judge Andrew L. Zumbar interrupted Myers’ plans to move to Korea with his wife Hannah, near her family, and work as a government contractor there before coming home to help his family with their church, Anointed Fountain Church of God in Christ.
“He offered me the chief bailiff’s job, the same job my father had with Judge (Robert G.) Lavery, and I couldn’t refuse. Pretty much, the duties are the same as I had as the chaplain’s assistant, so it was an easy transition and allowed me and Hannah to be back home close to my parents,” Myers explained. “I’m still young, even though I’m retired, so it was a good fit.
Myers acknowledged that each individual has many dreams during their life, and some are discovered later than others. “Yes, my dream was to become a world-class boxer, and today I still dream of pastoring. I’m working on my master’s degree in theology,” he continued.
“I’ve been blessed to travel the world, and I also dream to share the knowledge with the children of this community. They need good role models, as not everyone is a rapper and sports star. I believe these kids really want to change but are unsure how to do it, and education is key.”
When looking around the city, where he grew up 20 years ago as the oldest of three children, Myers looks at the lack of schools on the other side of the Martin Luther King Jr. Viaduct and school board representation. So he hopes to take his coaching to the next level, pulling petitions to seek an opening on the Alliance school board in the November election.
“I love coaching, and I always find time working out with the kids. I hope to provide an accessible adult role model and believe that children are open to the words. If we want something from a child, we need to just explain, and generally they will not only try to meet, but exceed the expectations,” the chief bailiff continued, adding it is all about nullifying the noise created by negative peer pressure.
Myers said that he grew up seeing that charity starts at home. “My parents were hard on me. My father was there to check me and bring me back when out of bounds, while my mother believed that if I could achieve success then the rest would follow,” he added.
“It takes a village” is not just a catchphrase for Myers, who believes wholeheartedly that schools need better connections with their parents, and parents need to both inspire and instill responsibilities into their children.
“We need to demonstrate that you need education to make it, and it is my hope to make a difference while bringing it back to its glory days. By teaching children the value of an education, it is my hope that we also can show them that they don’t have to leave Alliance to find success,” he added.
Myers has an 8-year-old son, Ace, who lives in Washington, D.C., and wants to grow up to be a football player. However, the importance of education is stressed. “Not everyone is going to grow up to be a Lil’ Wayne, Micheal Jordan or Robert Griffith. He is a very intelligent and well-versed little boy who speaks Spanish fluently.”
Three days a week, Myers still finds his way down to the gym, where he can observe those who shared the same Olympic dreams as he did decades before.
Ryizeemmion “Johnny” Ford, who continues to rack up state tournaments, is one of those athletes with a lot of promise.
“Johnny has the potential to be even better than I did at my best if he dedicates himself,” Myers said of the 132-pound city-based boxer who also wants to be a role model for youth.
For Myers, his mission is to help others and enhance the community. “I grew up on the other side of the tracks and live — not camp — here. I see these kids at the bus stop, and I hope to help them appreciate the beauty of the world around them,” he concluded. “After all, why have success if you aren’t able to help others.”
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