Mauricio Zingano, husband of UFC contender Cat Zingano, dead at 37 [UPDATE]
JAN 14, 2014 1:38p ET
Mauricio Zingano, the husband of UFC female bantamweight contender Cat Zingano who himself was a former MMA fighter, has died at age 37, two sources close to the family confirmed to FOX Sports on Tuesday.
Details of his passing were not known. Both of the sources confirmed his death but said they could not speak publicly in lieu of an official statement that will be released later today.
The Jefferson County, Colorado coroner did confirm his death to FOX Sports but also was not at liberty to offer any additional details.
Well-known MMA manager Jorge Guimaraes told Brazil's Globo that Zingano hung himself in Denver.
Zingano was 37 years old, and the owner of Zingano BJJ, a training facility that had two gyms in Colorado. He had also fought professionally three times, earning two wins and a draw before turning his attention to teaching. Zingano was a third-degree black belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu, training under the Gracies before earning his black belt from Carlos 'Caique' Elias.
He and Cat Zingano were married for three years, and under his tutelage, Cat Zingano burst upon the mixed martial arts scene and won eight consecutive fights, becoming the UFC No. 1 contender after knocking out Miesha Tate last April.
However, while training, Cat Zingano tore her ACL and was removed from the proposed title match with Ronda Rousey. On Dec. 28, Cat Zingano was in attendance at UFC 168 to see Rousey defeat Tate, and spoke of her excitement to finally get her opportunity before being passed up in order to set up a Rousey match against fellow former Olympian Sara McMann.
While the Zingano family has yet to publicly comment on the loss, Cat Zingano posted a mesage to her Facebook page earlier on Tuesday that said simply, "I will always love you Mauricio."
[UPDATED 12:30pm PT]
Statement from Cat Zingano
Late yesterday evening I learned that my husband and soul mate of seven years, Mauricio Zingano, has passed away.
My life has changed irrevocably. I am shocked and deeply saddened. Thankfully, my family and friends are coming together to provide the support I need. I am grateful for them, as I know there are many difficult days ahead.
I also very much appreciate the outpour of support from the jiu-jitsu and mixed martial arts world. My husband was well known and respected in this close-knit community and I know he would appreciate everyone's thoughts and prayers, as do I.
At this time, I respectfully ask everyone to give me privacy as I gather with relatives and friends. Again, I give thanks to all for the kind words of support.