UFC Heavyweight Shane del Rosario, 30, Dies Nearly Two Weeks After Suffering Full Cardiac Arrest

Shane del Rosario has died after suffering full cardiac arrest nearly two weeks ago.

Del Rosario, a professional MMA fighter since 2006, was 30. His friend and roommate, UFC flyweight Ian McCall, as well as teammate Carla Esparza, tweeted the news on Monday night. Sources close to the UFC told MMAjunkie a statement from the promotion is expected soon.

The heavyweight fighter was rushed to a hospital in Newport Beach, Calif., on Nov. 26 and was in critical condition after reportedly being found by McCall. According to multiple sources, del Rosario was on life support for several days. When he was removed from life support, he was able to survive until Sunday night.

News of del Rosario’s heart attack came as a shock to the MMA world when it was announced by his management team, which said the fighter was in critical condition following “full cardiac arrest” two days before the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday.

Del Rosario’s team at Iridium Sports on Nov. 27 tweeted that del Rosario was in the hospital after being resuscitated in the emergency room.

“Official Statement: Shane Del Rosario had a catastrophic cardiovascular collapse at home on Tuesday morning. He was brought to the hospital in full cardiac arrest. He was resuscitated in the emergency room back to a stable heart rhythm and blood pressure. He is currently in the coronary care unit critically ill. Our prayers are with him and his family.”
Del Rosario training partner Erik Apple later posted to his Instagram account a photo of himself with del Rosario, along with a comment: “yesterday my friend had 2 heart attacks and he is still fighting for his life. I got to see him last night and hold his hand and I know he isn’t giving up so we shouldn’t either.”

Del Rosario’s management team released a statement saying doctors were looking at the potential that the fighter had a rare heart condition known as Long QT Syndrome that typically goes undetected until there’s a problem.

Del Rosario (11-2 MMA, 0-2 UFC) started his combat sports career in kickboxing and muay Thai before moving to MMA in 2006. He started his career 11-0 with 10 first-round stoppages. After going 8-0 with wins for M-1 Challenge and EliteXC, del Rosario signed with Strikeforce and stopped Lolohea Mahe and Lavar Johnson in the first round.

He was booked for a fight against Daniel Cormier, but after being in a car accident, a herniated disc kept him out of the fight. He wouldn’t compete again until moving to the UFC, where he was stopped by Stipe Miocic in May 2012 and Pat Barry a year ago.

Del Rosario tried to return over the summer against Dave Herman, but was forced out with a rib injury. And in November, he was forced out of a fight against Guto Inocente (6-2 MMA, 0-0 UFC) that had been booked for UFC 168 later this month in Las Vegas.

In 2012, MMAjunkie videographer Rick Lee produced and directed a video for Fight Magazine detailing del Rosario’s road to recovery from the car accident, which was caused by a drunk driver. In the video, del Rosario talked about his desire to give back to those who weren’t as fortunate as he was, and that despite the accident and, at the time, being uncertain if he would ever fight again, he considered himself lucky for all he had.