Every now and again a person comes along and makes a tremendous impact on you, I am very fortunate I have got the privilege to meet some of the most amazing people in my journey with Fighting For Autism.
One of the most poignant and inspiring characters, I have had the pleasure in meeting is a gentleman called Tony Pillage.
Tony is not just an incredible martial artist, but he has a gift that is so incredibly rare that I'm not even sure there is an actual word to describe it.
Amongst Tony's many talents he is the proud owner of an outstanding martial arts school in Coventry, called The Way of The Spiritual Warrior, but also a radio show host, an accomplished author and above all he is an inspirational man that really does bring the best out of people, when Fighting For Autism did the punchbag challenge for Autism Awareness a while back, we had some incredible people take part in the challenge, some clubs didn't just pick up the ball and run with it, they lifted the entire pitch and run with it, Tony's club was one of these incredible clubs.
One of his classes that took part in the challenge (Tony's club did 3 in total) was the Coventry Muslim School, as Tony explained this wasn't just some of the children's first experience with Martial arts, a large number of the children at the school had come from some of the most war torn places on the planet, this was also one of the first places outside of school where these youngsters could in fact be kids, and with Tony's style of teaching have had a huge amount of fun and amongst other things have been raising Autism awareness.
Have a look at the video clips and you will see why Tony is such an amazing character.
This is a chap who has one of the most infectious senses of humour, and lights up a room in the best possible way, which holds him in such high regards with all who meet him.
Tony is also one of the main organisers of The Warriors Assemble- Fighting Spirit Awards, which is a unique awards ceremony that celebrates diversity in Martial Arts, which sees Martial Artists who have overcome significant adversity and thrive through martial arts, the importance of these awards cannot be put into words, the insights given by the winners of these awards are beyond vital as they serve as a beacon of hope, and show just what the human spirit is capable of, if it is channelled correctly, to say this gentleman has done so much for Fighting For Autism would be an understatement, Tony has helped attract from around the United Kingdom, martial arts athletes , clubs and coaches to not only become Autism aware, some of these are actually running Autism friendly sessions as well at their respective clubs.
Tony is also battling Cancer...
Tony has had operations to remove 2 cancerous tumours, and continues to battle, often putting himself last over others, sadly the treatments that are on offer are unavailable through the health service in the United Kingdom, which means that Tony himself is having to meet the significant costs in his battle himself, all proceeds from the copies of Tony's book "Breaking Bob" are going directly towards Tony's fighting fund, and some amazing Martial artists from around the world have been hosting seminars where all proceeds are also going Tony's Fighting Fund.
There is a Health and Healing Seminar being held by some amazing martial artists
Sunday the 13th of August at
The Way of The Spiritual Warrior Dojo,
520 Foleshill Road,
All proceeds will be going towards Tony's treatments.
If you have any form of social media please put the Hashtag #Tony Pillage and help us to send as many well wishes to Tony as we possibly can from around the globe, via Twitter, Instagram, Facebook for anyone that may want to donate to Tony's Fighting Fund the link is https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/anthony-pillage-726
If you could bottle the spirit of Fighting For Autism, you would find a healthy dose of Tony Pillage running straight through the centre, Tony and Sarah from each and every one of us at Fighting For Autism, we are sending our love to you in your battle and you are both in all of our thoughts.