Tyler Hennesy wants to make one thing clear: he doesn’t like fighting.
Yes, he boxes, and, to a certain extent, enjoys it.
And yes, he has been in numerous altercations in school, some of which he received punishments for others that went unnoticed.
But still, he insists that he only fights if he truly has to.
He fought when, in fifth grade, he was picked on for no good reason.
He fights when, in high school, he sees anyone being picked on for no good reason.
He fought when, in fifth grade, he saw a girl named Tiffany being ridiculed for having physical disabilities.
He fights when, in high school, he sees that same girl is passed over as weird or different.
He fought when, in seventh grade, he saw a boy in a wheelchair named Erik being avoided for getting in the way.
He fights when, in high school, he sees Erik being told to hurry up or move.
He fought when, in tenth grade, he saw a boy named Derek twisting about and sitting alone, speaking to no one, yet listening to everything anyone had to say.
He fights when, to this very day, he sees Derek sitting alone, still listening intently. Only now there is someone for Derek to talk to, someone to listen back to him.
And he will fight when, in college, he gets a degree in teaching, showing kids with special needs what it’s like to fight for themselves, but more importantly, for others.
And while he has over 30 detentions, numerous suspensions, and has been called, on more than one occasion, a “lost cause,” he keeps fighting.
Not by getting in fist fights with other students who criticize him or others.
And not by getting in arguments with teachers who claim he is “unmotivated,” “incapable,” and “lazy.”
But simply by being a better person, and fighter, than anyone ever saw.