Before Pacquiao would go on to become the first and only eight-division world champion, he was a huge underdog in the boxing world. Let’s rewind. At the age of 14, Pacquiao was living in poverty, often barely scraping by. After his parents split up, Pacquiao left his family and moved to Manila where he would roam the streets and spend most nights sleeping in a cardboard box.
Like in every true rags to riches story, the protagonist’s luck finally begins to change – same was true for Pacquiao two long years later. He turned pro at 16, weighing in at just 98 pounds (which was 7 pounds lighter than the minimumweight division). Later, Pacquiao admitted to putting weights in his pocket in order to make the 105lb cut off.
Since making his debut, Pacquiao won the majority of his fights, and his style (and story) quickly earned him supporters. He went on to climb weight classes and dominated opponents in each, and at the end of 2009, he was named “Fighter of the Decade” by the Boxing Writers Association of America. At one point he was also rated as the best pound for pound boxer in the word.
Outside of boxing, Pacquiao had a brief basketball career in the PBA (Philippine Basketball Association). Fun fact – he was the oldest, and the shortest rookie ever drafted into the PBA. He was also a dual athlete, which was another first.
Pacquiao’s hard work has made him very successful in a number of various (often unrelated) career fields. Today, he is the serving as Senator of the Philippines – a position he’s held since 2010. Although his first attempt at a seat in the House of Representatives was an utter failure, he came back strong and dominated his opponents in 2010 – winning by a landslide victory.
Today, Pacquiao lives in a $7.5 mansion in Lagao Village, General Santos City. His property is well known by locals, and the estate has been dubbed “Pacman’s Mansion.” The house spans over two stories and features a billiards room, a gym, a sauna, an entertainment center, and a recording studio. Most of the furniture in the house has been reported from Italy and Japan. Also on the property, you can find the servants’ quarters and a boxing glove shaped swimming pool.
In his garage, you will find a single Ferrari 458 Italia, which he purchased back in 2011. The car cost him more than $525,000, but its superb performance and sporty look have been more than worth it.
Aside from his nice house and car, Pacquiao doesn’t spend much money on flashy possessions. Instead, he took it upon himself to better the local community by starting a nonprofit foundation of his own.
The charity has been raising money for those in need, and since its inception, the organization has provided resources to thousands of needy children. On top of that, Pacquiao says that he signs at least 50 checks a day – usually for hospital bills.
Pacquiao says that his doors are always open and that he welcomes visitors. Many locals do come by, usually asking for help. The boxer has a heart of gold and does everything in his power to help out those in need. He regularly sponsors medical missions and donates a fair bit of cash towards scholarship programs for underprivileged youths.