The sport of boxing is alive and well in Turlock.
Adrian Palacio, along with his cousins Jeff Tovar and Tom Fernandez, have trained boxers of all ages to compete in the ring at his The Truth Boxing Gym in Turlock.
“It’s been in the family for years. Jeff’s dad and my dad grew up boxing. It’s what we all grew up with,” says Palacio, who owns The Truth Boxing Gym. Told.
They train boxers ages 5 to adults to compete in the amateur circuit. They are happy to train anyone, but Palacio he makes one thing clear. This is a boxing gym, not a fitness center.
“Our main focus is boxing. It’s competitive boxing. It’s mostly people who want to do it on some level,” he said.
The gym now has several boxers, continuing the family tradition.
Middle Dutcher Marquez Tovar won the Junior Olympic Nationals in 2021 and recently won the state Silver Glove Tournament in the weight class and is looking forward to competing in the new year. His older sister, Sandra Tovar, boxed for the USA team in the Youth World Competition before taking off her gloves to attend college. She now helps coach boxers at the gym with her father.
“I use my time to help train the little ones in a class. chooses to help others show them what they can do. If I can do it, they can too. I love watching you build your confidence while you’re at it,” said Sandra Tovar.
Sandra and Marques Tovar started boxing when they were nine years old.
Adrian’s son Christian Palacio has been boxing since he was 17 years old. Now 25, he competes in the USA Boxing Tournament. He said he would never step away from the sport because he is a boxer and the son of his boxing coach.
But it’s not just a family affair at The Truth Boxing.
Cesar Olvera said he’s been to gyms all over California but just clicked when he met his coach at The Truth Boxing. He has been boxing since he was 14 years old. Now, the 21-year-old ranks 9th in the nation in USA boxing with his 132 pounds.
“Central Valley is pretty popular for boxing. I noticed that there are a lot of them… There are a lot of aggressive fighters.
Turlock Jim has trained many up-and-coming US boxers, but there is also another group of boxers who have found success in the ring with the help of Palacio and his crew.
Kyle Hatcher is a full-time officer at the Livingston Police Department and competes in the United Combat Association, a competitive boxing organization for peace officers, firefighters and military personnel.
“For me, it started as a way to stay in shape and helped me ease the stressors of my job. I had to find a good outlet just to get away from it all. I got stuck in the first week of
Sports are now a big part of Hatcher’s life.
“I always say I’m a fighter who happened to be a cop,” he said.
He also discovered that being a boxer was a way to connect with local youth.
“I felt like I became someone in my position, and I was able to connect with a lot of kids. Some come from families who don’t know much about me, I feel like I understand them a little more, they know I’m a normal person…they open up a lot more. It’s cool when you’re a kid and didn’t expect to be friends with a cop,” Hatcher said.
The Truth Boxing Gym is located at 2219 Maryann Dr., Turlock. For more information, call (209) 351-1406.