Her list of injuries was horrific. Stab wounds to the chest, back and leg. A gunshot wound in the back. A punctured lung. Bruises on her head from having it smashed into a dresser. Had Christy Martin not had the resolve to escape her home and flag down a car to take her to the hospital, that night in November in Apopka, Fla.—when Martin's husband and trainer, James, allegedly assaulted her after learning she was leaving him for a woman—might well have been her last. "God blessed me," says Martin. "I'm still here for a reason."
The reason, she says, is to fight. Barely two months after the attack, Martin, 42, is ready to resume her career. She was released from the hospital after a week and was training again—with a bullet still in her back—four weeks later. She moved to Las Vegas to work with trainer Miguel Diaz and, 15 years after she graced the cover of SI, Martin (49-5-3) will take on Dakota Stone in a super welterweight bout on March 12 at the MGM Grand. "I'm a fighter," says Martin. "I want 50 wins. And after that, I want 60."
Martin says she tries not to think about the attack, though the trial, set for May (James Martin pleaded not guilty to attempted murder), makes it hard. She has been overwhelmed by the outpouring of support on her Facebook page and finds comfort in the familiarity of the gym. "Boxing is what I do," says Martin. "Besides, I want my second cover."
HENRY S. DZIEKAN III/GETTY IMAGES (MARTIN)
CAN'T KEEP HER DOWN Five weeks after being shot, Martin was back in the gym.