Meet The German Boxer Who Fights To Preserve His Armenian Heritage | Flag and Family

Since childhood I’ve lived here
in Germany, in Hamburg. Hamburg has made me into who I
am today. That is why I’m very proud to
is Artem Harutyunyan. I was born in Armenia but
I live here in Hamburg. I’ve been boxing since I was
ten. When I was six, I started with
taekwondo. My dad was already a martial
artist back then. In the time of the USSR, he taught karate in the
military. He had his own karate school. At that time, he was also
stationed in Germany. He’d seen the country and then afterwards came here with us
WORLDWIDE) At home, we mainly played but
our dad trained with us, which was more like playing
around to us. My dad has prepared us since we
were little kids. As a child, that was very
difficult for me. Sometimes I was in the locker
rooms, very nervous and anxious, and I didn’t really know what
was coming, if my opponent was a strong
one, or stronger than me. Taking to the ring now for this
second welterweight semifinal, Germany’s Artem Harutyunyan. Originally from Armenia, his family fled to Germany back
in the early 1990s. That’s OK? Good luck. A boxing family. His brother
Robert represented Germany in the 2013 World
Championships. There is sometimes a feeling of
anxiety about failing, especially at the Olympic
Games. Germany hadn’t won a medal in
12 years in boxing. I was the only boxer competing. The medal was on my shoulders. If I hadn’t won the medal, the whole financial sponsorship would have been cut. The pressure was very high. There’s a wonderful story. When
he finished last year’s World Championships, you know
what he was doing? He was training Syrian
refugees. He’s a refugee himself.
Good man. My body has to take a lot
during fights. I boxed in the World
Championship two years ago, which went on for 12 rounds. Of course, your body has to be
prepared and trained for that, to be able to deal out blows
and take them, especially when the rounds are
taking this long. An athlete is like a machine.
A machine has to be maintained frequently. It’s exactly the same with an
athlete. You have to be treated and
examined by doctors. That’s why I’m frequently
getting physio as well. All my life I’ve trained
together with my brother. We’ve been inseparable
since we were kids. We take every single step
together, we started boxing together, and that’s why he’s always by
my side. He’s boxing up to 60kg and is
the number one in his weight class, and I am the number one
in mine. My parents have always made
sure that we were dressed properly. We were like twins and always
wore the same outfit so there wouldn’t be any envy. Proper, clean things – that was always very important
for my mother. I’ve lived in container
ships previously, but I was just a baby,
one year old, so I didn’t really understand
a lot. Then I lived in a shelter
for six years and spent my childhood there, then afterwards we moved into
an asylum apartment. Getting out of the whole asylum
life probably took about ten years,
if not more. Of course, I was young,
I was a child and only had playing on my
mind, no worries. But I also recall memories where I saw the dad of a friend
in the asylum, bloody, being carried through
the hall. As a kid, I didn’t understand
it all but now I know there must have been some kind
of fight and he was accidentally stabbed
with a knife. I’ve seen that as a kid.
It was shocking, but at that age you don’t
understand it. My trainer is Artur Grigorian.
I’ve been training with him since the beginning of the
year. However, I’ve known him for a
very long time. He is not only my trainer
but also my father-in-law. He himself has done 384 amateur
fights in his time and then became a pro boxer
here in Hamburg with 18 World Championship
titles. I think he remained unbeaten
for nine or ten years. Now he is my trainer and is
preparing me for the World Championship. (ARMENIAN DIASPORA) (3 OUT OF 11 MILLION ARMENIANS
Armenian people were chased out of Armenia
back then and there is some kind of
solidarity when I meet Armenian people, because we share history. I have really tried to keep my
Armenian culture. Armenia has recognised
Christianity in the year 301, so that’s where my Christian
faith stems from. God is in first place for me.
I believe in Jesus Christ and was raised Christian.
I have my education from Jesus Christ. I am very close to my family. For me, it’s important to
always be there for my family, whether they need help or not. Without my family, I would not
be me. I would not sit here.

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