World champion boxer Christy Martin brings tale of domestic violence to local gym

World champion boxer Christy Martin, whose ex-husband stabbed, shot and left her for dead, will be in Asheville this Saturday to speak to women about domestic violence. (Photo credit: WLOS staff)

A world champion boxer whose ex-husband stabbed, shot and left her for dead will be in Asheville this Saturday to speak to women about domestic violence.

Christy Martin put women's boxing in the spotlight when she turned professional in 1989. She was the first woman to be signed by Don King and spent 10 years under his promotional banner.

Martin's career skyrocketed over the years, and, in 1996, she was on the cover of Sports Illustrated.

However, things took a turn for the worst when Martin attempted to leave her ex-husband and former trainer James "Jim" Martin. On Nov. 23, 2010, he stabbed the boxer multiple times, shot her and left her for dead.

"The next day, I realized God left me here for a reason," Martin said.

She now uses her story and boxing as a way to inspire other women to build the confidence and have the courage to leave violent relationships.

"You have to be strong. And once you make that decision to go, you have to go and, no matter what he says or what he does, you cannot revert back to that same situation," Martin said.

She is expected to speak at America's Top Team in Asheville at free self defense clinic from 1-3 p.m. Saturday.

Instructor Preston Marks said the class will focus on real-life scenarios and how martial arts can help women fight and be strong in dangerous situations.

"Statistics show 95 percent of women are attacked by someone they know in a familiar setting. So, we are starting with this idea, it's not going to be walking to your car with keys in your pocket or in a dark alley somewhere. It is probably someone that you know, someone you trust that's stepping over his bounds. In that moment, right there, you have to continue to stick up for yourself and fight for yourself," Marks said.

To learn more about Christy Martin Promotions click here.

To find out more about American Top Team Asheville click here.

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