On Saturday night, FighterSoul Promotions threw an 11 bout Mixed Martial Arts event at the Wyndham Bay Point Resort on Panama City Beach. Several local fighters took the cage throughout the night, including Brian Piccolo, a fighter News 13 told you about last week, who is battling stage four esophageal cancer.
Brian faced 22-year-old Jeff Swain in his bout, and thanks to his background in wrestling, beat Swain on the ground by TKO after 1:07. After the fight, Brian talked about how emotional the win was for him and his family.
"It was a great win in front of a lot of people," he said Saturday after the fight. "A lot of great friends came out to see me. It's just another stepping stone to build a name up for myself in the fight field. The message I'm sending out right here to the youngins is that they see me out there taking chemotherapy, and they see the stage four cancer, and they still see me out here competing, and not just competing, winning. This right here just shows all the hard work right here paying off."
Brian was given nine months to live in February, and told News 13 that his main priority was to finish building a house for his family. He said the community support has been overwhelming.
"I'm very surprised about everybody that's helping me out. It won't be long before we're in that house and I'm so grateful. I just feel like I'm obligated to physically repay someone and help everybody, and I don't think I can help that many people. It's just so gratifying. I'm not a guy that tears up a whole lot, but I got a little mushy the other night just seeing all the responses. Again, I'm so grateful, and if there's anything I can ever do for anybody, I'd be the first to help you."
Information on helping the Piccolo's can be found at the bottom of this article.
Of course, you can't have an MMA without a Main Event, and last night local fighter Sedric Johnson faced Bobby Tucker out of Georgia for that main event. There wasn't a ton of stand-up in the fight, and Tucker won by armbar in the first round. Tucker improved to 9-2 with the win, and says he plans to turn pro. He said facing a Panama City native gave him extra motivation to succeed.
"When I got here, I stepped in that cage, and I danced around and I owned it," he said after the victory. "When you go somewhere and you take ownership, that's my philosophy. You take everything that's not nailed down, even if it's a life. That's what I came out here to do. I owned it, and it became my house."
The Piccolo's have set up an account with Innovations Federal Credit Union. The name of the account is "Benefit Account for Brian Piccolo," and the account number is 0052247911.
Innovations has several branches located throughout Bay County:
910 Thomas Drive, Panama City Beach, FL 32408
700 W. 23rd Street, Panama City, FL 32405
625 Jenks Avenue, Panama City, FL 32401
2250 S. Highway 77, Lynn Haven, FL 32444
864 N. Tyndall Parkway, Callaway, FL 32404
17900 Panama City Beach Parkway, Panama City, Florida 32413
Phone Number: 850.233.4400