Nate Quarry comes out of retirement to help make special needs teen's dream come true
Jacob Beckmann had been training mixed martial arts for some time when he began to plead with his coach Greg Walker to let him compete. Most people may have balked at letting the special needs young man with Down Syndrome even train to begin with, but after demonstrating a lot of discipline in his training, his coach and his parents decided to find a way for Beckmann to have an authentic MMA competition experience.
Former UFC middleweight title challenger Nate Quarry stepped in to help make Jake the Snake's dream come true, recently. The two met in a cage for a title fight exhibition and after about a round and a half of action, Beckmann hit a double leg takedown and transitioned into a heel hook to force Quarry to tap out, and earn a championship belt (video above)
Afterwards, donning slick aviator sunglasses, Beckmann said of wearing his new belt, "I kinda like it. I can't wait to show my dad."
The bout reportedly raised $1,000 for Create the Connection, an organization started by Beckmann's mother to " develop innovative outreach activities and communication tools to assist people with differences to engage the world around them in meaningful, exciting ways."
That mission is exactly what motivated Quarry to get involved. "Throughout my life, over and over again, I've been given an opportunity to live my dreams," he said after the fight.
"And if I can make the slightest effort to help a young man not only live his dream, but also show his mother what it could be like for him to follow his dreams..." he said.
Quarry also said he hoped to help let people know that "special needs people are just people that are a little different - [they] are just that, they're a little different. They have dreams, they have goals just like the rest of us so why should we try to tell them how to live their lives. If we can break them out of their box I think that is the right thing to do."