A recovering alcoholic thrown off a plane after downing a cocktail of drink and drugs is aiming to be a knockout in a charity boxing match today – after sport helped her turn her life around.
Emma Tuttle, aged 37, said she had hit ‘rock bottom’ when she narrowly avoided jail at Sheffield Crown Court in October last year.
She was escorted off a plane bound for Tenerife at Doncaster airport last July, after the captain was alerted to her drunken behaviour. She was abusive to staff and her speech was slurred.
Emma, of Cawdor Road, Arbourthorne, was sentenced to an 18-month community order - which she said was a turning point in her life.
“I was in a dark, dark place. I had severe depression and at the time I thought my world had ended,” she said.
“I needed help and, with the support of my family, I was able to transform my life. Now, three months sober, I feel great.”
Emma and 30 other women will fight in a competition at Sheffield’s Owlerton Stadium from 3pm today raising money for charities.
“People laugh when I tell them I do boxing,” she said. “They think it is unusual for a woman to be so into her boxing. But I have always enjoyed watching it, and it does miracles for your fitness.
“After rehab I joined Ponds Forge gym and at first I could not even do a sit up.”
Emma now trains twice a week at Sheffield Boxing Centre in Hillsborough with boxing legend Glyn Rhodes.
She also works for the Sheffield Alcohol Support Service and uses her experience of overcoming an addiction to help others.
She said: “I want to get the message out that however bad it seems there is always hope.
“There are moments when you feel like giving up, where nothing seems to be working, but you have to keep going, because at the end of the day it will be worth it.”
Today’s event is hosted by Pink Collar Boxing and Emma has raised £150 for Sheffield’s Domestic Abuse Outreach Service.