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July 27, 2010

Adrienne Simmons, a local fighter who has trained at several Atlanta gyms and fought locally, has passed away after fighting this weekend in Florida.
Khunpon Dechkampu of Bangkok Boxing Gym, on his way to Florida, confirmed to David Oblas of GeorgiaFighters.com at 9 pm tonight that unfortunately Adrienne passed away.

Adrienne was competing in the IKF Kickboxing Tournament in Florida this past weekend and had made it to the Championship bout for her weight class. She was knocked out and unresponsive. She was then rushed to the hospital and had surgery for brain bleeding and swelling and went into a coma.
We’ve since learned from an interview with Adrienne’s boyfriend, Chike Lindsay, that there was no ambulance on site at the event and that Adrienne had to wait 30 minutes to be airlifted to a hospital. According to the interview with Chike, it took nearly an hour from the time that Adrienne was injured until she finally arrived at the hospital.

Adrienne’s fight was against Lindsay Scheer, a Muay Thai fighter from Kentucky who has fought in Atlanta several times.

On his Facebook, Lindsay’s coach Eric Haycraft, who has been deeply involved in the sport of Muay Thai for many years, posted the following:

Lindsay and I had wanted to wait for more official announcements about the tragic turn of events this weekend at the IKF Kickboxing tournament in Orlando. It seems that several websites are already mentioning the event and of course facebook has exploded with rumors and comments. We have known Adrienne for a number of years. I have many ties with the entire Atlanta fight scene and the ladies had been following each other both at fights and online.

There were five girls in the Open division of the 130-140 Muay Thai. Lindsay had to fight three times over the weekend and Adrienne fought twice to meet each other on Sunday in the finals. Adrienne had a very tough fight on Saturday to get her to her finals match.

The bout itself seemed normal enough on all fronts. Lindsay, the more experienced of the two, took control of the bout scoring an eight count on the very first jab thrown. Several seconds later a standing eight count was given and the round drew to a close. Round two continued with more of the same, however Adrienne never stopped trying and never gave up. No eight counts this round. The third round opened up and Lindsay landed a three punch combo that ended the bout. The ref waived the bout off immediately and the doctors who were already sitting ringside watching the bout were in the ring right away.

It really just seemed like a normal bout. It was a heavy shot but everyone involved from the ref to the doctors and officials and myself had no reason to believe there was anything abnormal except a fighter getting their bell rung like we all have had at some point in our careers.

Adrienne came to, we were right there as she sat up and spoke. Confirming our thoughts that this was to be no different than any other bout ending blow. Adrienne was taken to the back and attended to by the medical staff and we took care of the stuff we had to after the bout such as photos and such.

We shortly after were told along with everyone that Adrienne had been airlifted out.

The events that unfold from here are very sad and in my twenty years of kickboxing I am ill prepared to explain or even handle well. We have had opportunities to speak with the ref, the doctors all the ringside officials and the burden and second guessing after the case is huge. Our sadness and inability to properly process all these events leaves us with no words.

My only hope is that Chike has the same support network in his community that we have here in ours and that he will have it in his heart to let us be a part of his extended support network. This is a life changing event for all involved but obviously most of all for Chike and Adrienne.

We love this sport with all our hearts. It is a game with risks and while we all know this, these risks seem so far removed. Let me make this clear...no one could have seen this coming. The ref, the doctors, us, her corner. No one. It is a horrible accident that happened at a sporting event.

We do not have all the latest news from Florida and until it is officially announced by Adrienne's people please please be respectful of the things that are posted. It is a very sad day. We love you Adrienne.

With Heavy Hearts,

Eric and Lindsay

WKA USA would like to extend our prayers for Adrienne her friends and loved ones, and our deepest condolences to all those close to her during this painful and difficult period. All of us in the combat sports community will certainly feel the loss of such a talented and outstanding presence as Adrienne.

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