Paddy The Baddy gets emotional as fan credits him with saving his life
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Paddy Pimblett has moved mountains for men’s mental health.
Back in July, the UFC legend was praised when dedicating his victory speech in part to a close male friend who had recently taken his own life, telling the packed-out arena: “Listen, if you're a man and you've got weight on your shoulders, and you think the only way you can solve it is by [suicide], please speak to someone, speak to anyone.”
Shortly after Paddy’s speech, Andy’s Man Club - a men's mental health charity in West Yorkshire - reported a spike in the number of men attending the centre, and now, one of Paddy’s fans has had the chance to tell the fighter face to face just how much his words on mental health meant.
Watch the moment unfold below:
Ahead of Paddy’s upcoming fight against Jared Gordon on Saturday (10 December), the 27-year-old Liverpudlian took part in a meet and greet in Las Vegas.
Paddy became emotional when he was approached by a fan named Grant Edmond who told him: "Paddy I want to tell you that your video about the suicide thing saved my life, that's why I'm still here.”
Grant added, according to The Mirror: "I have gone through a rough year and I was very suicidal. Paddy's message when he was in the ring after he won talking about his buddy who passed away, saved my life.
“I just wanted to say thank you to him, I appreciate him very much and I'm so glad to meet him."
Touched by Grant's words, Paddy replied: "That means more than any fight ever will, someone telling me they didn't kill themselves because of what I said. It gets you here [the heart]."
Moments after beating Jordan Leavitt over summer, Paddy said: “I woke up on Friday morning at 4am to a message that one of my friends, back home, had [died]. This was five hours before my weigh-in. So Ricky lad, that's for you.”
He continued: “But, there's a stigma in this world that men can't talk. I know I'd rather my mate cry on my shoulder than go to his funeral next week. So, please, let's get rid of this stigma and men, start talking!"
Shortly after Paddy’s win, Andy’s Man Club confirmed it had seen a spike in the number of men attending.
Leeds and Castleford facilitator Andy Wilson told the Yorkshire Evening Post that many people came down for the first time after Paddy’s speech.
"The interview with Paddy Pimblett following his fight at the weekend can only have helped raise awareness on how important it is for people to open up and talk if they're struggling with anything and a reminder once again that it's okay to talk,” Andy said.