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This article was published 28/4/2015 (2585 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
A martial arts champion who grew up in Brooklands is flying home to Winnipeg to accept a richly-deserved honour.
On April 30, kickboxing inspiration Baxter Humby be honoured for his dedication to combative sports at the High Stakes Havoc professional boxing card. High Stakes Havoc consists of nine fights organized by local boxer promoter John Vernaus (a.k.a King John) and starts at 6 p.m. at Club Regent Casino.
Humby, widely known as "The One-Armed Bandit," was born in Gillam, Man. and moved to Winnipeg at an early age. His right arm was severed below the elbow at birth as a result of his umbilical cord being wrapped around the limb, but that didn’t stopped him from putting on boxing gloves.
"I like to say I started fighting early," Humby said from his home in Pacific Palisades, Calif.. where he’s lived for the past 19 years.
Humby grew up watching Bruce Lee movies as a kid and watching boxing with his dad, who first introduced him to martial arts.
"My father passed away when I was eight and he taught me how to box when I was four," Humby said.
It was his father who called him "The One-Armed Bandit" when he was a kid and so he decided to keep it and use it as his ring name in professional kickboxing.
"The only limits you have are the ones you put on yourself," Humby said. "When I started fighting nobody thought I could be a fighter because I only had one hand, let alone a world champion."
In 1996, Humby won the Canadian super welterweight kickboxing championship. He looked around for more opponents but discovered no one wanted to beat a one-armed man just as much as no one wanted to get beat by a one-armed guy. A year later, he headed to the Golden State in search of opportunity.
"When I won my world title in Las Vegas (2007) that was the highlight of my career. It made it official that I had succeeded in my dreams," Humby said.
The now two-time world kickboxing champion and the current International Muay Thai Council world super welterweight champion is extremely appreciative the Winnipeg boxing community still remembers him and is excited to receive the award.
"They should make a movie about him," boxing promoter Vernaus said.
"First of all, two world kickboxing titles with one hand, he put a glove on it and they let him fight, second of all he is a father and he was also Spider-Man in the stunts in the third Spider-Man movie."
Humby has been featured doing all kinds of stunts in many movies including Spider-Man 3, The Shield, A Million Ways to Die in the West and others.
"I didn’t know what I was going to do because usually they want me to get my arm broken or something like that but they needed me to punch through the Sandman so I actually got to be Spider-Man," Humby laughed. "All the posters and billboards that were around were basically Spider-Man punching into the Sandman so I got to see myself all over L.A. and North America."
While living in California, the father of two got a chance to meet his idol, boxing great Sugar Ray Leonard. They have since become close friends and Humby said they played tennis together just the other day.