Boston Bruins forward Shawn Thornton is one of the "major league" sports stars who has been in the news in the past as both an MMA fan and as someone who supplements his training with Brazilian jiu-jitsu. He's also the founder of the Shawn Thornton Foundation, a foundation which will see some big UFC names host a fundraiser this week to raise money for Parkinson's disease research and treatment.
Thornton isn't training jiu-jitsu this summer -- anyone who saw the physically punishing Stanley Cup final between the Bruins and Chicago Blackhawks would understand why he's taking a rest -- but Thornton will use his UFC connections for a charity fundraiser on Wednesday night in Boston. Thornton, UFC president Dana White, and UFC Hall of Famer Forrest Griffin will host "UFC Homecoming" at Boston's Barrio Cantina, an event which will raise money for the Shawn Thornton Foundation.
The foundation was established to raise money for the research and treatment of Parkinson's disease. Thornton established the foundation after the passing of his grandmother, who suffered from the disability for 14 years.
"It's such a terrible, terrible disease," Thornton said. "My grandmother fought it as well as she could, but it was just so bad watching what she went through. I had to do something about it. These guys from the UFC, they don't really get enough credit for how much charitable work they do. They've got a busy week and they're making the time to come out and do it. It's going to be a fun night."