by Patheresa Wells
Nomad Boxing Club and Rowhouse International have come together to provide an afternoon of community building and entertainment to honor the late Willie Briscoray, known as Coach Bumblebee. The first annual Bumblebee Memorial Boxing Showcase will take place on Saturday, April 16, 2022, 2–6 p.m. at Washington Hall. The event aims to continue the work of Coach Bumblee, who mentored young fighters during his lifetime by working to promote the work done by Treehouse, an organization whose mission is to create “a world where every child that has experienced foster care has the opportunities and support they need to pursue their dreams and launch successfully into adulthood.”
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Coach Bumblebee’s Protégé brings his South Seattle spirit to Ballard
by M. Anthony Davis
In the midst of the bars, coffee, shops, and eateries that line both sides of Market Street in Ballard, is Nomad Boxing Club. On my first visit, it felt like I had been transported right back to South Seattle. That’s because Manuel “Coach Manny” Dunham, the founder of Nomad Boxing, is carrying on the legacy of South Seattle’s local boxing legend Willie “Bumblebee” Briscoray. Dunham, who had an impressive amateur boxing career, highlighted by a record of 56–14, three Pacific Northwest Championships, and a Golden Gloves win, was one of the last prospects to train with Briscoray.
“Me and Coach Bumblebee, we have one of those Mike Tyson, Cus D’Amato relationships,” Dunham says. “I lived with him for seven, almost eight years. We would stay up all night and we would watch different videos of fights, breaking down footwork and head movements … He was a tough dude. I saw how he trained people and the impact he had on their lives. I wanted to make sure I was able to pass on the torch. Out of everyone at that gym, I was the last protégé, I was the last champion. He told me he wanted me to take over the legacy.”
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