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After years of training, Charles is trying to fight in his first wheelchair boxing match — but it’s not easy. He needs an organizer, a venue and — most importantly — an opponent.

Charles Wilton has been fighting for his whole life.

Abandoned by his birth parents, Charles was placed in the foster care system as an infant and abused by his caregivers.

His disability was misdiagnosed many times. Doctors said he would never speak.

As a child, Charles fought to be removed from special needs classrooms when school administrators didn’t understand that his disability affected his body — not his mind.

At age seven, Charles was officially diagnosed with Quadriplegic Spastic Cerebral Palsy. He was adopted by this speech therapist and, with intensive therapy, was able to start using his voice to communicate. In high school, Charles found athletics and set a world record in race running.

Life was still difficult. In the years following high school, Charles attempted suicide three times. He was barreling toward rock bottom when he started working out again. Training as a boxer became his priority. At a leadership workshop, Charles met Sean — who later became his manager. The two started searching for Charles’ first official fight.

They set up a match in the UK and raised money to travel to the event. The fight was guaranteed as a sanctioned event — but days before the match, the organizers decided that they didn’t want to take on the liability of wheelchair boxing. Instead, they used Charles to demonstrate a training product. Charles returned home defeated and feeling like he’d been used as a “side-show.”

Frustrated with all the major boxing organizations saying “no” to a fight, Charles took to social media. He connected with Jesse, another disabled boxer, and they decided to organize their own wheelchair boxing match — against each other.
    
Charles and Jesse are fighting for something bigger than their own right to fight. They’re frustrated with how disabled people are treated and have decided to put on a demonstration to show the world just how tough they are.

Credits (Click to expand)

Directed by JONATHAN JUDE

Produced by GG LOMAS

Production Managed by AYAH HART

Edited by SHANDO URUVATH

Original Music by IVA DELIĆ

Camera
JOEL RUSCINSKI
ZACHARY DUCHIN
ADRIEN YIPTONG
JONATHAN JUDE

Post Production TRIM ROOM

Post Sound by DEANNA MARANO

Executive Producers
MARK CIRA
DESERT BEAR PRODUCTIONS INC.
JONATHAN JUDE MEDIA INC.
THE YOUNG ASTRONAUTS INC.

Described Video & Closed Captioning Services by
BLAIR SLATER

Broker Insurance
ARHTUR J. GALLAGHER CANADA LTD.

Legal
TERRY E. MARKUS, B.A., LL.B.

Production Accountant
IVAN DOLYNSKY

Special Thanks
CHARLES “THE PROFESSOR” WILTON SEAN MORRIS
PAPITO WILSON
JESSE SPARKMAN
GARRY SPARKMAN
KATE ELLIS
ELIZLEY PAGADO
CHAD RANDALL
MIKE PEDENELLINI MICHAEL DIETRICH
Post Sound by
DEANNA MARANO
Described Video & Closed Captioning Services by
BLAIR SLATER

Additional Music
  “ENDURANCE”
Composed by SCUTA SALAMANCA
Published by KPM APM

Special Thanks
CHARLES “THE PROFESSOR” WILTON
SEAN MORRIS
PAPITO WILSON
JESSE SPARKMAN
GARRY SPARKMAN
KATE ELLIS
ELIZLEY PAGADO
CHAD RANDALL
MIKE PEDENELLINI
MICHAEL DIETRICH
RUPA KANAN
PHILIP TEODORI
MARKETPLACE MEDICAL
SUSAN SPARKS
AMY SYLVESTER
BRIAN VIOLANTE
JOYCE FUNG
HERBIE FABULUS
EVAN POUND
KEVIN MARRIN
REID AUSTIN
STEVE RICHMOND
DANIEL NISKFU
QUENTIN STOSSEL
PENNY LARAKOS
NATALIE CAMPBELL DJEDJE
ELIAS THEODOROU
HASAN KHALID

Produced in Association with CBC

General Manager, Programming SALLY CATTO
Executive Director, Unscripted Content JENNIFER DETTMAN
Senior Director, Documentary SANDRA KLEINFELD
Senior Director of Production, Unscripted Content ALEXANDRA LANE
Executive in Charge of Production, CBC Docs
LESLEY BIRCHARD