Victoria Lee, a rising undefeated star in the world of mixed martial arts (MMA), has died, according to her family. She was 18 years old.
The news was confirmed by Lee’s older sister and fellow MMA fighter Angela Lee, who wrote on Instagram that her sister died the day after Christmas.
“On December 26, 2022, our family experienced something no family should ever have to go through… It is incredibly difficult to say this… Our Victoria passed away,” Angela Lee said. “She has gone too soon and our family has been completely devastated since then. We miss her. More than anything in this world. Our family will never be the same. Life will never be the same.”
“Victoria was the most beautiful soul who ever lived. She was the best little sister in the world,” she continued. “The best daughter, the best granddaughter and the best godma / aunty to Ava and Alia. We miss you so much sis. More than you could ever realize. We’re all broken. Because a piece of you was in each of us, those pieces were ripped out of us when you left. We will never be the same. Each and every little thing makes me think of you. From the sun rays, to the sunset.”
Angela Lee concluded the statement by encouraging people to “check on your loved ones” and to do so repeatedly.
“Give them hugs and tell them how much they mean to you,” she added. “You just never know.”
No cause of death was given.
NBC News noted that ONE Championship, an international sports media platform, said in a statement that the company was “devastated over the tragic passing of Victoria Lee.”
“I am heartbroken by Victoria Lee’s passing. I first met Victoria when she was 11 years old,” ONE Championship Chairman and CEO Chatri Sityodtong said in a separate statement, according to CNN. “I watched her blossom over the years as a martial artist and a human being. I always remember thinking how wise, thoughtful, and selfless she was beyond her years.”