GoFundMe for former wrestler, MMA champ Mark Kerr

A GoFundMe page has been established for Mark Kerr, a champion wrestler in high school, college and national freestyle competition who went on to find success in a mixed martial arts career where he was known as "The Smashing Machine" and "The Specimen."

Kerr, 50, has been battling peripheral neuropathy for the last 3 years, according to the text at the GoFundMe page, which goes on to state that, over the last 6 months, the disease has made it almost impossible to work. The fund is intended to help pay medical expenses not covered by insurance.

Born in Toledo in December 1968, Mark Kerr launched his amateur wrestling career as a freshman at Bettendorf High School in Iowa. His family returned to Ohio, where Kerr won an Ohio state wrestling title for Toledo Waite High School.

Mark Kerr battles Randy Couture
Kerr then headed east to Syracuse University in upstate New York, which had an intercollegiate wrestling program at the time. Kerr won the 190-pound title at the 1992 NCAA Division I Championships, defeating fellow future MMA star Randy Couture who wrestled at Oklahoma State in the finals. In 1994, Kerr was crowned USA Senior Freestyle Champion at 220 pounds.

In January 1997, Kerr had his first pro MMA fight. He tallied eleven straight wins, with all but two of those ending in the first round. His last fight was a decade ago -- a first-round knockout loss at the hands of Muhammed Lawal, a former wrestler at Oklahoma State.

Kerr was the subject of a 2003 HBO documentary, The Smashing Machine.


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