Zbikowski Family Gives Back

Tom Zbikowski could have taken another big payday this summer. Perhaps another fight at Madison Square Garden, or maybe even Las Vegas this time. But the Irish safety and professional heavyweight boxer, with the help of his family, came up with a better idea. A fight for charity in South Bend on March 6 that allowed Zbikowski to donate roughly 50,000 dollars to various charities.

The Zbikowski family has been on the receiving end of such generosity during tough times in their lives, so they took and ran with the opportunity to give back. So the whole family played a role in putting together the event, that had people paying 100 dollars to sit ringside for a three-round exhibition, and had several kinds of memorabilia and tickets auctioned off. The proceeds went to the Make-A-Wish Foundation, Cystic Fibrosis and Irish head coach Charlie Weis's Hannah and Friends.

"My family history, my brother had two brain-tumor surgeries," Zbikowski said. He gave 20,000 dollars to Weis's non-profit organization. "I saw the stress it put on my family. I was real young but I know the stress it put on my family. I know my mom was working two jobs, she was almost sick at the time still working two jobs. My dad was working all the time. You just get to see first hand the amount of stress, whether it be a special-needs child, or it'd be brain-tumor surgery or cancer in the family, it's a stressful situation for people. You have to give back because I know the last payment my parents had to make was paid for by a charitable donation. When you walk in when you're a little kid, you don't know the difference or anything but you see your mom crying when she looks at a check, it's going to make an imprint in your mind."

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