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Wilton Banker Goes to the Mat for Vets

WILTON, Conn. – Wilton resident Sean George is an investment banker by day, and a fighter by night. And no, he doesn’t have a secret superhero identity. But he has turned his passion for martial arts and boxing into a second profession and a successful Stamford gym.

George is the co-owner and co-founder of C3 Athletics, a gym specializing in boxing, Muay Thai boxing and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. And on Friday at 6 p.m., he will open the doors to the gym to the public to give back to the community that has allowed him to share his hobby with Fairfield County. C3 Athletics will host “Fighting for Our Vets,” a night of exhibition fights to raise money to help Connecticut’s homeless veterans.

“We just started brainstorming what we could do, and I’m a big believer in supporting our veterans because of what they do for us,” George said. “And what we do for them is really not on the right level. I hope to make this a yearly event, because it’s a cause you can’t give enough money to and it’s a problem that’s not going away.”

All donations collected at the event will go to the Bridgeport-based Homes for the Brave. According to its website, 26 percent of America’s homeless population are veterans and 1 in 3 homeless men have served in the military. George said the goal  is to raise $10,000 to $15,000 dollars.

C3 Athletics boasts some of the top-ranked Thai boxing and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu fighters in the world as trainers. George promises there will be some entertaining matches on Friday evening.

George grew up “all over the world” and started boxing when he was in high school. He moved back to the U.S. after college and got into the banking industry, but never lost his passion for boxing. On a family trip to Thailand, George happened to find the best Thai boxing training camp in the world completely by accident and started to train.

“I always wondered what I would do after my trading career is over. Because getting up at 4 in the morning and getting home at 10 at night you can only do for so long,” George said. “I got to train with the best Thai boxer in the world. When I came back I wanted to open something that was legit where if you want to fight, you could really learn.”

George enthusiastically touts the trainers he has brought onboard. At the same time he eagerly welcomes people new to the sports who are just trying to get in shape.

“That’s why I started this. I woke up one morning after being married for a few years and having kids and said, ‘Man, I’m out of shape,' ” he said. "Now I get to train with some of the best fighters in the world. It's a dream come true."

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