Francis Ngannou is heartbroken following the loss of a family member who was dear to him. The UFC heavyweight champion posted a touching eulogy on social media, mourning the loss of his uncle Laurent.
The Cameroonian grew up amid poverty and revealed that while his father wasn't always able to buy books and pens for him to go to school with, his uncle Laurent would. On his way back from school, Ngannou said he'd stop at Laurent's store and ask for bread.
Despite having "dozens of kids" himself, Laurent apparently never refused and didn't let 'The Predator' go home with an empty stomach. Looking back, although Ngannou showed gratitude, he feels he could have done more for Laurent.
In a heartfelt eulogy posted on Instagram, Ngannou wrote:
"R.I.P uncle Laurent. We lost a huge member of our family yesterday and I personally lost a role model myself. I could've counted on him to have at few books and pens every year while my own dad didn't care that much. I knew that on my way back from school at 5pm - while I still had 5 more miles to walk - I could stop at his store and beg for bread and even if he was unhappy he'll always give it to me sometime with peanut butter sometime with butter - so he was for years a last line for me and my family regardless of his multiple wives and dozen of kids. I tried my best to show gratefulness but somehow I still feel like I could've done more."
Check out the Instagram post below:
With Francis Ngannou on the sidelines, UFC could book another interim heavyweight title fight
Francis Ngannou recently underwent surgery to repair a torn MCL and damaged ACL. An injury sustained during the lead up to his first title defense against Ciryl Gane at UFC 270.
The surgery was successful and Ngannou is currently recovering. However, he may well be sidelined for the remainder of the year and it is unlikely that we'll see him inside the cage before 2023.
In the meantime, the UFC is likely to book yet another interim title matchup in Francis Ngannou's absence. According to Dana White, Jon Jones and Stipe Miocic are likely to collide inside the cage this summer.
White had earlier mentioned that if Ngannou fails to return to the octagon this year, Jones could be fighting for the interim title on his heavyweight debut.
During a recent interaction with TMZ Sports, White said:
"Listen, people have been talking about how awesome this card is, and I was just telling somebody the other day our lineup for this summer is incredible.So I’m hoping that Jon Jones is going to be a part of that lineup this summer. Stipe makes sense."
Watch the full interview with Dana White below: