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'Made him happy to see me in the ring' | Boxer dedicates upcoming fight to father shot, killed in DC

Arthur 'Buddy' Harrison was shot and killed outside of his SE, DC home Saturday. His son, Dusty Hernandez-Harrison will fight in the Beltway Battles Boxing Showcase.

WASHINGTON — The son of a boxing coach shot and killed in D.C. plans to honor his father in an upcoming fight. Dusty Hernandez Harrison, the son of Arthur 'Buddy' Harrison Jr. will bob and weave through his raw emotions Saturday at the Beltways Battles: Round Three boxing showcase, one week after his father was killed. 

Buddy Harrison was shot and killed outside of his Southeast, D.C. home on Sept. 24. The Metropolitan Police Department are still searching for two shooters in this case.  

“Boxing has given me everything that I love in life, but also everything that I have to hate about it,” the 28-year-old fighter said of his decision to still step inside the ropes and fight. 

Life hit below the belt for the former Welterweight World Title Contender when his father was killed. Hernandez-Harrison laced his boxing gloves for the first time when he was just two years old, and ever since, he said he's known he had his dad in his corner. 

“I was able to call him as a coach, call him as a father, call him as a friend," Hernandez-Harrison said. "And he did a good job of navigating through those three different ways that I viewed him." 

In the last five months, Hernandez-Harrison said he and his father focused on goals, losing 70 pounds in that time. 

“It made him happy to see me in the ring," the boxer said. "I think he knew that that's when I was doing all the right things in life, I was focused on being healthy."

Though it would be easy to throw in the towel now, Hernandez-Harrison said he's rolling with the punches. 

“He always loved the fact that I was fighting again, it made him happy,” he said. 

But the fight of his life will continue outside of the ring. In less than a weeks’ time, Hernandez-Harrison said he's been forced to face the true legacy his father left behind.

“His job was truly helping people ... we're trying to keep doing it," Hernandez-Harrison said. "And it's amazing how many people it's going to take us a step up just to do what one man did. So, it's gonna be hard but we're gonna continue to do it. Somehow we'll figure it out."

There will be a candlelight vigil for Arthur 'Buddy' Harrison, Jr. on Thursday at 2700 30th St SE. It starts at 7 p.m. 

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