EliteXC Fighters Show Thanks

Los Angeles-based ProElite, Inc.’s Live Fight Division, EliteXC, sponsored a charity event Tuesday in which turkeys were distributed to needy and underprivileged people who’d otherwise go this week without a turkey dinner and all the trimmings.

Six popular EliteXC fighters joined forces with their local neighborhood charity organizations to help donate not simply turkeys or time, but also hope to those in need.

Robbie Lawler, Charles Bennett, Edson Berto, KJ Noons, Gina Carano and Kala Kolohe Hose were each fighters who participated in the organization’s charity event.

“This is our way of reaching out and helping people that may not be as fortunate or well off as some others,” EliteXC Live Events President Gary Shaw said. “If EliteXC and our fighters made the day better for one person, if we put a smile on one face, we will have done our job.”

Shaw continued, “I really want to thank the fighters. It says a lot about anybody who will take time out of their schedules to go and do some good for others in their community. I am really proud of all of them. We plan to do something like this every holiday season from now on.”

According to a recent EliteXC press release, fighters volunteered in such cities as St. Louis, Mo., Ocala, Fla., Las Vegas, Nev., San Diego, Calif., and Honolulu, Hawaii.

In St. Louis, Mo., EliteXC/Icon middleweight champion Robbie Lawler volunteered at the St. Louis Food Bank. Lawler seemed to put his ‘Ruthless’ side on hold for the day to give back to the people of his new community.

Robbie said, “I might be considered a champion for what I do in the ring, but these volunteers are the real champions.”

Fifteen hundred miles from where Robbie Lawler spent the day in St. Louis, female MMA superstar Gina Carano donated her time by taking turkeys to Safe Nest, a Las Vegas-based organization for women and children of domestic violence.

“I am a tough fighter and I have a great team to support me in the ring, but I choose to pick my battles and step into the ring,” Carano said. “These women don’t choose their battles. I want to show women that we are all strong and there are shelters and support services to stand behind them.”

In Ocala, Fl., the ever-lively Charles ‘Krazy Horse’ Bennett joined fellow EliteXC lightweight Edson Berto at the Interfaith Food Bank, ready to participate in one of the organization’s busiest days of the year.

Bennet said, “I am proud to have the chance to give something back to the people in my community. This is my home and I want to work with EliteXC to do more things like this for every holiday.”

KJ Noons, an in-ring nemesis of the aforementioned Bennett and the recent winner of EliteXC’s lightweight championship belt, volunteered at The Fallbrook Food Pantry, near San Diego, Calif. Noons helped distribute food to people who were recently affected by the destructive fires in southern California.

Noons enjoyed the time he spent volunteering and said, “I wish I had a world championship belt to give each of the workers who have been devoting countless hours for all these families day in and day out. They are truly an inspiration.”

Hawaii favorite and No. 1 middleweight contender, Kala Kolohe Hose, brought turkeys to the Institute of Human Services in Honolulu.

He said, “Since I signed on with Icon Sport and EliteXC, I have realized how lucky I am,” he said. “I have become much more aware of those less fortunate. I am ready to reach out and help my fellow man.

This might be my first visit to this organization, but it won’t be my last. This is the beginning of a new relationship for me. I am proud to give back to the people in my community.”

Kala continued, “Inside a cage, mixed martial artists are known for being the meanest, roughest, baddest, toughest, most well-conditioned, determined and dedicated athletes in the world of sports. Outside the cage, they are among the most compassionate, humble and caring people one ever would want to meet.”

EliteXC president Gary Shaw hopes that Tuesday’s stride was but the first of many opportunities for the EliteXC organization and its fighters to give back to the communities that help support them.

“During Christmas time, we will be giving our athletes’ time and gifts to children,” Shaw said. “One smile on one child’s face makes it all worth it. At EliteXC, it will always be about giving back to the community.”