The sport of professional mixed martial arts lost another one of its own this past Friday when 32-year-old Ross “The Grizzly” Clifton passed away from an apparent heart attack. His wife had gone to bed and left him watching TV in the recliner Thursday evening at their home in Rancho Cordova, Calif., and when she woke up on the morning of Sept. 4, 2009, Clifton was deceased.
Clifton’s former trainer, UFC veteran Cal Worsham told MMAWeekly, “He was a jovial teddy bear inside of a grizzly’s body. He was just so funny and such a character in the way you’d never expect from a giant of a man like that. He’s absolutely going to be missed.”
Clifton ran a small MMA school in Cameron Park, Calif. called “Grizzly’s Den.” At 6’8″ and 360 lbs. he fought at super heavyweight and held a professional record of 6-10. All but two of Clifton’s bouts were fought in the Gladiator Challenge promotion.
Although he lost, his highest profile bout was against Ken Shamrock back in February at War Gods. He would go on to have one more fight after that. Clifton’s last professional fight was against Rick Vardell on July 31, 2009 at Gladiator Challenge’s “Total Recall.” Clifton lost via first round TKO.