San Francisco News

Sugar Ray Leonard fundraises for San Francisco Child Abuse Prevention Center

Friday, April 26, 2013

Boxing legend Sugar Ray Leonard was the keynote speaker Friday at the San Francisco Child Abuse Prevention Center fundraiser, but he didn't talk about boxing. He spoke about the new battle he is taking on to prevent child sexual abuse.

"It happened so quick," he told a sold-out crowd. Sugar Ray spoke to more than 500 attendees about the people he trusted, who molested him when he was a young teenager, an aspiring Olympic champion. "The only problem was I told no one because I was ashamed," he said.

The 56-year-old shared a powerful and emotional story that had the audience in tears about how he turned to drugs and alcohol, and wrecked a marriage. He also explained why he finally decided to go public with his story after 40 something years.

"I'm here because I want to speak up. I want to speak out. I'm here as a parent, as a father, as a husband, and yes, as a fighter," he told ABC7 News. "I wish there was prevention center for me that I could have been a part of, that could help me during my time."

Sugar Ray's support for the San Francisco Child Abuse Prevention Center raised some big money including the surprise auction package of his autographed boxing gloves and lunch at his Southern California home.

The overall total for the luncheon, thanks to Sugar Ray Leonard, was $450,000.

Click here for more information about the San Francisco Child Abuse Prevention Center's Services.

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Tags:
child abuse, children, fundraiser, celebrity, san francisco news, cheryl jennings
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