More on Michael Kirkham, MMA Fighter Who Died After Competing


The Augusta Chronicle had three stories on the late Michael Kirkham on Saturday.  They spoke with Carlos Iraburo, his opponent:

"I got really emotional and thought, 'What have I done?' " Iraburo said.

He went home that night to his wife and two children still worried about Kirkham. He tried calling the hospital in Aiken, but no one would give him any information.

When he read online the news of Kirkham's death, "it was overwhelming," Iraburo said.

"I have to admit, it's not an easy feeling. I'm going to be messed up inside for a while."

They spoke with his brother T.J. Kirkham:

TJ Kirkham describes his brother as a devoted father who was involved in his children's lives. When construction work was scarce, he walked three hours to the closest job.

His journey toward professional MMA fighting started two years ago. He had limited access to a gym or a coach, but his family knew that wouldn't stop him.

Instead of treadmills and barbells, Kirkham jogged dusty roads and lifted cinder blocks.

They also discuss the potential political impact of Kirkham's death on MMA in South Carolina.

The Charleston Post and Courier, one of the state's most influential dailies is calling for banning the sport:

South Carolina has had enough problems with blood sports involving animals -- cockfighting, dog fighting, hog-dog fighting. It doesn't need to get behind those involving humans.

Legislators should choose carefully when the state's image is at issue.

Cockfighting draws many spectators, some from out of state. And it generates a substantial financial return, at least for those on the winning side. Still, cockfighting isn't an enterprise worth cultivating for South Carolina.

Neither is mixed martial arts.

And MMA Junkie reports on a fund raising drive for Kirkham's family -- he left five young children:

Donations can be made online via PayPal at A link to the fund is also available on    

HT Fight Opinion

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