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Marines show UFC fighters what real warriors are

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Marines show UFC fighters what real warriors are

Marines show UFC fighters what real warriors are

People always tell me, how cool it is what we do, but there’s nothing cooler than being a US Marine.

A lot of people look at UFC fighters — and athletes in general — as warriors. Think of the NFL alone. How many ads do you see that show football players, or hockey players, or UFC fighters, as warriors preparing to go to battle? Of course, while these men are obviously incredibly impressive athletes, they aren’t warriors.

On January 8th of this year, UFC fighters Gabriel Gonzaga, Marcus Davis, Rashad Evans, Forrest Griffin, former Marine Brian Stann, and UFC founder Dana White spent the day learning what being a real warrior is all about. They visited Marines at MCB Quantico, and it was clearly a humbling experience for them.

See, the difference between athletes and Marines is that Marines have to be warriors. They don’t go to battle and then go to a locker room when it’s over. It’s kill or be killed for them. They have to be the best they can be, because if their lives are on the line when they go to battle. It isn’t just a game.

This is somewhat personal for me. With my husband in Afghanistan, I can sleep well at night knowing that he, and the Marines he’s deployed with, have received the best possible training, and the best possible equipment, they can get. It’s life or death out there. My husband has been in an IED blast. He was lucky to only get a concussion. They’re in firefights constantly. They’ve lost two Marines and one corpsman. These Marines have to be warriors, they have to be at the top of their game, if they’re going to survive.

These UFC fighters got a taste of what all of this means, and how serious the training Marines go through is. Honestly, I thought that they would breeze through the MCMAP, Marine Corps Martial Arts Program. They didn’t. I thought that, as professional athletes, the Marine Corps obstacle course would be a piece of cake for them. It wasn’t. The Marines showed up these professional athletes, these men who do mixed martial arts for a living, in every way possible. These fighters were humbled by these men, these boys.

They showed them what real warriors are.

This is what supporting Project Valour-IT is all about. These men answered our nation’s call, gave all they had to give, and never looked back. At the time of their greatest need, we cannot abandon them. When these warriors have given so much to defend us and our freedoms, can’t we give a little to help them?

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  • dunce says:

    They went there with respect for the marines and left with more.The frat boys look at the military as intellectually inferior losers that could not make the grade in higher education.

  • Mugwa says:

    Cassy, you say that “while these men are obviously incredibly impressive athletes, they aren’t warriors.” While I like the piece you wrote, I take issue with this. These UFC guys were out of their element, as the marines were out of their element in the MCMAP class. They admitted it. If I had to place my bets on a single marine in a cage fight against a seasoned MMA fighter I’d have to go with the latter. My point is I don’t see the point in impugning martial artists harboring the warrior spirit to the exaltation of Marines, who function better in units and are the outcome a toss up in singular combat. Its apples and oranges, and lets not go to far. What I do agree with is that the Marines have signed over their bodies and souls to the defense of the country. That may or may not equal a better martial artist.

    Of all, I think we need to remind ourselves that the US has become Rome somewhat, the MMA is “bread and circuses” and sanguine entertainment for a culture that is becoming morally and spiritually bankrupt. We don’t want to be imperial Rome but a shining city upon a hill. Ironically, the Marines and military folks re-entering politics and civvie life may bring the culture back from the brink – we an only pray in Christ.

  • mt01 says:

    Your saying Mugwa that no one owns the warrior spirit. It can be tapped by multiple routes not just Marine Corp. I would agree. I’ve trained in a martial arts program for 4 years created by a former special ops soldier x 30 yrs. I was surpised to see the Marine Corps MA program wasn’t buttoned up better. Just being honest. It does seem the author is right – I too expected a lot more from these MMA fighters. I’ve seen better from 3rd year martial arts students. I wonder what happened.

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