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Manager of boxing gym, a safe haven for Cleveland kids, says landlord won’t fix collapsing wall

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Posted at 6:51 AM, Oct 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-30 06:53:00-04

CLEVELAND — For Gary Horvath, the boxing ring is all he knows.

“63 years for me in the boxing gym. It’s home away from home.”

Horvath is the owner of Old Angle Boxing Club. Now, he spends most of his time outside of the ring, training, mentoring and watching his fighters.

“It’s not about the money here. It’s about getting the kids off the streets and working with them,” he said.

Every single kid from 7-17 who walks into his gym, is training for free.

“I just can’t find it in my heart to charge youngsters gym dues every month,” he said.

The adults pay $35 every month.

“All the coaches up here are volunteers, and if we can help somebody and maybe show them a little something great hopefully they’ll keep coming back,” said Matt Sysack, a boxer and trainer.

And while Horvath has been in many fights in his day and age, he said he’s never dealt with something like his gym falling apart before his eyes.

“This is what came down from this 20-by-20 wall came tumbling down here,” he said, while standing in the stairwell entrance of his gym.

A week ago, the mix of drywall and cement covering the foundation of the building the gym is in at 3212 W. 25th street, collapsed.

“If it would’ve been later when the kids were coming in, this is not an injury, this is possibly a death,” said Horvath.

Horvath said his landlord, didn’t get someone to clean up the debris until nearly a week passed by.

“Everything is always about money, money, money with the owner of this building,”he said.

The owner of the building is Kevin Kennedy. He is also the mayor of North Olmsted.

“He said ‘go get a broom, sweep it up and throw it out,” said Horvath.

When News 5 reached out for a comment regarding the wall, Kennedy said he had someone clean it up and that the wall didn’t seem like that big of a deal.

But Horvath is worried more of it will fall down.

Kennedy said he would get someone to assess what to do next, but didn’t specify when that would be.