Autopsy Report Reveals Toughman Fighter's Cause of Death
Nathan Johnson, 23, died of "blunt force trauma to the head" after a fight in a Toughman Competition.
By Rusty Surette, NEWS 9
OKLAHOMA CITY -- An autopsy report on a Toughman Contest participant who died following a fight in Oklahoma City is complete.
According to the death certificate, Nathan Johnson's cause of death is "blunt force trauma to the head." The manner of death is listed as an accident.
The 23-year old died after fighting in the Original Toughman Contest last month at the Oklahoma City Farmers Public Market. Johnson, a Latta High School graduate, suffered severe injuries to his head, including irreversible brain damage, according to his family.
The next Toughman Contest fight scheduled in Oklahoma is at the Spirit Bank Event Center in Tulsa on March 12 and 13.
The organization's president, Stephen Coppler, said he will be at Tulsa's fight.
In a news release Coppler stated:
"All of us at the Original Toughman Contest are devastated and our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends. The Oklahoma Athletic Commission has been in contact with his family and his story will be told to fighters before every Toughman, Professional Boxing, and Mixed Martial Event held in the state.
From Joe Miller, OK Athletic Commission, "I will call it the Nathan Johnson Briefing. During instructions the fighters will be told the story about Nathan. The fact that he told his Mother the day of the fight he was experiencing headaches but did not divulge that information to anyone with the event, not even the doctor at the pre bout physical, for fear of them not letting him continue. The fighters will hear, if they have an injury and cannot fight, that does not make them weak or less of a man. Not only will I give this briefing in Toughman, but every boxing or MMA event as well. His mother very much approves of this and said that it would be part of his legacy.
The Original Toughman Contest has also adopted a version of the Nathan Johnson Briefing: a document in writing created by a neurosurgeon describing concussion symptoms which will be explained to participants, and if they have had no such symptoms, they will then sign and can continue in the contest."
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