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Phoenix renames part of Fillmore Street after boxing champ Michael Carbajal

Phoenix city officials and community members gathered Tuesday evening to unveil ceremonial signs renaming Fillmore Street from 9th to 10th Street "Michael Carbajal Way" in honor of the legendary boxer.

Carbajal is a six-time world champion boxer and Olympic silver medalist. After retiring as WBO World Champion in 1999, he was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame just five years later.

“This is the perfect time right now because we get to not only recognize your boxing career, but your post-boxing career,” Fox 10 Sports Anchor Richard Saenz told him during the event. “What you’ve done for this community, for this area, for all these people. This is all for you.”

After his time as an in-ring competitor ended, Carbajal returned to the community where he owns Michael Carbajal’s 9th Street Gym. Now signs on each corner officially mark it with his name.

“I’m very proud of you guys because you guys helped me become who I am today,” Carbajal said. “Whatever anybody wants to do, whatever it is — boxing, football, any athletics, any work, anything. All you gotta do is believe in yourself and love yourself.”

Carbajal himself unveiled the sign at 9th Street and Fillmore.

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Kirsten Dorman is a field correspondent at KJZZ. Born and raised in New Jersey, Dorman fell in love with audio storytelling as a freshman at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication in 2019.