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P.E.I. MMA fighter dies after sparring

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    P.E.I. MMA fighter dies after sparring

    P.E.I. MMA fighter dies after sparring

    CHARLOTTETOWN -- Noel Ayangma isn't a fan of mixed martial arts but accepted his son's participation "because he loved it so much."

    Rene Ayangma, 20, died suddenly Tuesday night, shortly after finishing a sparring session in preparation for his second professional bout.

    "He was a young, lovely boy," a sombre father said Wednesday night.

    Rene Ayangma was training at Largo Fitness Centre in Stratford, P.E.I., when he collapsed shortly after finishing a light sparring session.

    Mike Gallant, a spokesperson with the fight club, said Ayangma had just finished his workout when he dropped suddenly to a knee and fell forward.

    Gallant said an instructor and a club member rushed in to perform CPR on Ayangma, who had lost consciousness but still had "shallow breathing."

    He was pronounced dead at the hospital.

    The cause of death wasn't immediately known and the province's chief coroner was investigating. An autopsy was to be performed Wednesday.

    The death was the second this week involving a young, fit athlete.

    Mickey Renaud, captain of the Windsor Spitfires of the Ontario Hockey League, collapsed at his Tecumseh, Ont., home Monday and died. He was 19.

    The cause has yet to be determined.

    Noel Ayangma said his son, a biology student at the University of Prince Edward Island, was "one of the nicest persons you would ever see."

    "He was always happy. He loved everybody. For his age, he was just too much," he said.

    A Facebook group established in Ayangma's memory attracted more than 1,000 members by midday Wednesday.

    "You will be missed man ... you're too young to go," one person posted on the group. "I was looking forward to the next fight. See you someday dude!"

    Another person said his favourite memory of Ayangma "would have to be any time I saw him."

    "He always had the best smile on his face, a great attitude and was the life of the party. We will miss you so much Rene."

    Gallant said the tall, muscular Ayangma was in great physical condition and had passed a thorough medical before his first fight in Moncton, N.B., in December, which he won. His second fight was to be held March 15 in Halifax.

    "He was fantastic," he said. "He was a natural at it. He was strong and had a very natural, athletic ability."

    The club was sombre Wednesday as friends and fellow competitors tried to come to grips with the death.

    "There's still a lot of shock and a lot of reminiscing going on," said Gallant. "He's going to be missed for a long time to come."

    Lewis Page, coach of the UPEI men's soccer team, was stunned by the news. He coached Ayangma in soccer on and off since the athlete was about 13, including stints with the UPEI Panthers and provincial teams.

    "The first reaction is disbelief," said Page. "I mean a young, healthy, strong guy. ... He was just one of those guys that you always wanted on your team because he was so upbeat, so good with the other players, always positive -- a joy to coach."

    Ayangma played for the Panthers for three years before choosing to leave the sport in the fall to pursue mixed martial arts.

    His father described his son as a natural athlete who was good at every sport he played.

    "He was always making sure he was the best," he said. "I think that's what killed him because he was trying to be ready."

    Gallant said Ayangma dreamed to make a career out of fighting. "He had lots of aspirations and he seemed well on his way with them."

    Mixed martial arts is a full contact combat sport in which a wide variety of fighting techniques are used, including punching and leg strikes.

    Larry Hale, chair of the university's biology department, said Ayangma expressed interest in going to medical school, possibly specializing in sport medicine. He was taking both second- and third-year courses at the Charlottetown school.

    "He was very engaged in my genetics course," Hale said. "When he asked questions, they were insightful."

    Save the jokes.

    Here is his first and only fight in King of the Cage.
    Attached Files

    God that is so sad.

    PizDoff - can you keep this thread updated when the coroner's findings are released?


      tragic on so many levels. Sadly, I have seen and or heard about this in various sport ranging from soccer, basketball and as stated in the article, hockey. I even talked to someone who was rolling with some one (BJJ) that died while in his guard - they were going light and he actually got investigated afterward to see if he did anything purposefully to cause his death.

      Anyway, I think we all would benefit if someone on this forum with some medical knowledge can shed some light onto this. I imagine that a lot of these have to do with existing conditions that the athlete was unaware of. Can anyone please tell me where they might be able to get screened for such conditions?
      Thank you.


        This is a real shame. Very sad for his family and gymmates.

        Cough/Cool, I'm not in the medical profession, but when a young athlete dies suddenly like this, I personally suspect a cardiac event. The most common cause seems to be hypertropic cardiomyopathy (enlarged heart muscle).

        See here: Seems like an EKG is the best way to disgnose/prevent.

        We'll see if the cause is something else in this case though.


          Of all the places in seems weird this would happen out there. What a shame.


            That is terrible. I'm surprised it happened during sparring rather than competition. I wonder if he had a medical condition or a heart condition which made him susceptible to this.


              Your kidding me right TFM? in a compettion would be so much worst... AND it would make the opponent feel like he did something wrong.


                Hopefully this won't be used against the sport in some lame sensationalized media report. RIP, what a shame.


                  Thats horrible. Probably had some type of condition or something that he just never noticed. Laid dormant and then... well, this. Thats terrible. Maybe it happened due to some type of supplement or medicine. Still that sucks.


                    It probably didnt matter what sport they do, like the article said, someone else had died as well


                      May he rest in peace.


                        If they find out the cause of death is an abnormality in his heart then hopefully it will be a call for EKG checks during pre fight medical checks.


                          Several GAA (Gaelic Games) players have died suddenly from heart problems in the past few years, here's some info from the Cormac McAnallen trust, a charity set up to prevent further deaths:


                          R.I.P. Noel


                            It's a shame,

                            However... at least he died doing something he actually enjoyed and wanted to do.
                            Still too dammed young to go ... No matter how you slice it.

                            His family and freinds have my empathy and condlences.


                              Originally posted by The Fake Macoy
                              That is terrible. I'm surprised it happened during sparring rather than competition. I wonder if he had a medical condition or a heart condition which made him susceptible to this.
                              Originally posted by Purpleskunk
                              Your kidding me right TFM? in a compettion would be so much worst... AND it would make the opponent feel like he did something wrong.
                              I don't think he said it would have been better to happen during competition - I think he meant it would be more likely to happen then, when adrenaline and stress are likely to be higher and might contribute to an underlying condition.

                              When I opened the article, I was afraid that he might have died as a result of injuries sustained during sparring (which may yet be the case, once they have the autopsy results). If he had an undiscovered medical condition then it takes the blame off the sport and his teachers, but if he died of injuries, that points to irresponsible training. And at this age, it's the coaches and trainers who need to ensure the safety of the fighter.

                              In any case, no one deserve that.



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