MANILA, Philippines – ONE Championship prodigy Victoria Lee died at the young age of 18 last December 26, her sister Angela announced on Instagram on Sunday, January 8.
No cause of death was given, but Angela ended her caption telling people to “please check on your loved ones. Keep checking on them. Give them hugs and tell them how much they mean to you. You just never know.”
“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 wrote.
“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.”
Already holding the moniker “The Prodigy” in her early teens, Victoria lived up to the hype by winning her first two ONE matches by submission and the third by TKO, all in 2021.
After taking all of 2022 off, Victoria was supposed to break her hiatus on January 14 with an atomweight bout against India’s Zena Bano at ONE Fight Night 6: Superbon vs Allazov in Thailand before the tragic development.
The who’s who of MMA poured in to Angela’s post to offer their condolences, including Demetrious Johnson, Aung La N Sang, Rodtang Jitmuangnon, and Miesha Tate, along with other rising stars like Filipina Denice Zamboanga and Thai Nat “Wondergirl” Jaroonsak.
“She was an extraordinary martial arts prodigy even back then, but I could see that she was so much more than that,” wrote ONE Championship CEO Chatri Sityodtong.
“Victoria had the purest heart of gold and a brilliant mind. She looked after others before herself. She wanted to use her life to help the world. I will always remember Victoria for the beautiful and precious soul that she was.”
Angela also remembered her younger sister as “the best person” she knew.
“Each and every little thing makes me think of you. From the sun rays, to the sunset. You taught us to see the beauty in the simple things. You were our bright light. Our sunshine. And that will never change,” Angela said.
“You were perfect in every way. The best person I knew. The most beautiful girl, inside and out. We love you Victoria. I love you Sprout. Until the end of time.” – Rappler.com