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Former UFC fighter rescues parents from fire, battles for his life

Mark Coleman fought in 26 UFC fights during his career, but now he battles for his life after attempting to rescue his dog from a fire.
UFC Hall of Famer Mark (The Hammer) Coleman before his main event fight in 2010.
Posted at 10:17 AM, Mar 14, 2024

Mark Coleman, a former UFC star and collegiate wrestler, is battling for his life after reportedly saving his parents from a house fire and then trying to rescue his dog. 

According to an online fundraiser launched by his family, Coleman woke up Tuesday morning after a fire began consuming his childhood home in Northwest Ohio. Coleman managed to assist his elderly parents out of the burning home. 

Coleman's family said he went back into the home to rescue their dog. Their dog, Lil' Hammer, did not make it out of the fire. 

Coleman made it out of the home, but needed medical assistance, according to an incident report obtained by WTOL-TV.

"Mark's face and hands were covered in black soot," the report says. "He was coughing and having trouble breathing. I had them start moving towards the road. When EMS came on the scene, I advised them that Mark was not doing well. They took him to the ambulance."

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His daughter Morgan provided an update on her father's condition on Instagram.

"He was life-flighted to the hospital where he is currently battling for his life after this heroic act," she said. "Our father has always been our hero and means the world to us. He is and always will be a fighter. The strongest and bravest man I know."

WTOL reported the fire is believed to have been started by a stove that was accidentally left on. 

Coleman's battle drew a slew of well-wishes. 

"Sending our thoughts and prayers to Buckeye Wrestling legend Mark Coleman and his family," Ohio State's wrestling team posted on X.

According to his UFC bio, Coleman went by the nickname "The Hammer." He compiled a 16-10 record in UFC, and competed in the light heavyweight division. 

Coleman last fought in 2010, losing to Randy Couture.