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@Sammarelli is a former Italian Inter-Regional Champion and WBC Canadian Amateur National Lightweight Champion who found his passion for boxing when he was just 15 years old while living in Italy, and pursued the sport after moving to Canada competing and dominating at the provincial and national level.
On March 13, 2017 – Leo’s trajectory to making boxing his livelihood hit a world-changing roadblock when a bullet pierced the eighth vertebra in his back and left him paralyzed. What most would face as a career end, Leo leaned on his unwavering determination and trained athlete’s instinct to focus on recovery, getting up, brushing it off and getting back in the ring as his motivation to get out of the hospital and keep moving forward. After experiencing a massive physical and emotional shift from being an able-bodied high performance athlete to an everyday wheelchair user, Leo persevered as a true leader, mentor and all-round inspiration by using an adaptive form of the sport to give him purpose as a Boxing Coach and Adaptive Athlete.
Leo continues to lead by example and coach both able-bodied and wheelchair athletes, and showcases how pushing boundaries is an essential discipline in and out of the ring. Leo also launched the non-profit West Coast Wheelchair Adaptive Boxing (@wwadaptiveboxing), is the current Director of BC Boxing, and is working with Great Britain Disability Boxing to provide opportunities to adaptive athletes while paving the way to have adaptive boxing recognized as a sport.
First knows no limits.
Welcome to #TeamEverlast Canada, Leo. 🥊