Mike Powers | News-Bulletin photos
Katherine Lindenmuth prepares for a Feb. 23 appearance on a Golden Boy Promotions fight card in California.

(Editor’s note:  Katherine Lindenmuth, of Bosque Farms, improved to 3-1 as a professional boxer with a split decision victory in California on Thursday.)

LOS LUNAS — The sport of boxing produces some fascinating stories and Katherine “Kat” Lindenmuth, of Bosque Farms, is one of them.

Lindenmuth, who trains at Rosales’ Kickboxing and Karate Academy in Los Lunas, started boxing less than three years ago and turned professional last April. She sports a 2-1 record.

Oh, and Lindenmuth is a 33-year-old widow with three children. Not your typical boxing story — more like a reality show.

With that as a backdrop, “La Guera Pistola,” as she is billed, faces a possible career-changing fight on Thursday, Feb. 23, in Indio, Calif., against Lorraine Villalobos. The bout is under the banner of Golden Boy Promotions, owned and operated by Oscar De La Hoya, the former world boxing champion and Olympic gold medalist.

“It’s a really big match,” is how Lindenmuth describes it. The fight card will be streamed on DAZN.

How did Lindenmuth get to this point?

“I’ve been with Anthony (Rosales, her trainer) since I was about 16 years old,” starting with karate, Lindenmuth said.

However, life eventually got in the way. Jobs, husband, kids.

“I grew up a little bit. I went away but I came back,” turning to boxing this time. “I really love this. It’s a really good outlet.”

She describes the atmosphere as a family.

“It brought a closeness to me that I feel like I lost,” she said. “I gained a lot even though I lost so much.”

Lost so much? Her husband died in 2018, her father in 2019 and her mother-in-law in November. After realizing “how fleeting life is,” Lindenmuth has no interest in wasting time.

That’s why after a brief amateur boxing career, where it was difficult finding opponents with a similar lack of experience and diminutive size, Lindenmuth decided to go pro.

“It was a really good, decisive move — you know what, it’s now or never,” she said. “I’m trying to push this as hard as I can, as far as I can.”

The mission is to be a world champion and travel the world. But it’s not just for herself.

“I am really big on community. I want to bring light to Bosque Farms, to Los Lunas, to our little-bitty town that raised me,” Lindemuth said. “And that is still raising up young children that are just trying to make better from all the things that are going wrong in society.”

Boxer Katherine Lindenmuth is surrounded by her children, Dominic Garcia, left, Javin Garcia, right, and Ezehkiah Lindenmuth, center.

At 4-foot, 11-inches tall, and weighing just over 100 pounds, Lindenmuth is not menacing until you watch her train. Just focus on the punching power and the eyes. That will get your attention.

“A high-intensity workout is really intriguing to me,” she said. “I love that. I feed off that.”

The 2007 Los Lunas High School graduate competed in several sports, including cross country and basketball before jumping into cheerleading during her senior year. Lindenmuth spent about 15 years as a cheer coach at various schools and programs in the area.

With her job, three kids and a boxing career, Lindenmuth says the balancing act would not work without a “good routine” and a good support system.

“I have some friends, some family who help me. I have a basic schedule from the moment I wake up.”

That includes feeding her “crazy boys”  and getting them to and from school and their various practices.

“All these places at once — it’s difficult.”

But through the chaos, Lindenmuth has found calm, and a passion in boxing.

“I like to think I’m pretty good. I’ve got a lot of work to do, just stay very humble,” she said. “Work very hard, but I like what I’m doing. It’s challenging and mentally stimulating. I found a home.”

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Mike Powers spent more than 40 years as a television news and sports anchor, mostly in the Albuquerque market. He has won numerous awards including New Mexico Sportscaster of the Year. He covers a wide range of sports, including the Valencia County prep scene.