AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – The Augusta boxing community is mourning the loss of one of their own.
Brandon “Big Bear” Spencer, a local professional boxer who had success in the ring, capturing both the ABA U.S. Heavyweight Championship and the ABA Southeast Regional Championship.
While Spencer may be gone, he certainly will not be forgotten.
“Brandon was a huge guy. He was just a massive human being; over 300 pounds. He had the biggest, most jolly laugh and smile. It was always fun. I mean, him laughing would make me laugh. It just sounded so funny,” said Mark Greubel, the head coach for the United States kickboxing team.
“When he would come to the ring, you would fall in love with my brother on the way walking to the ring and be so fearful by the time he got in because the ring would start shaking. It was always an experience,” said Fernando Bunch, a professional fighter and a dear friend of Brandon’s.
“I always said he reminded me of Samson in the Bible, because he had this strength, you know. No one could beat him. Born with a purpose,” said Angela Clement, Brandon’s godsister.
While Spencer saw his share of success in the ring, that wasn’t always the case; but then things changed.
“He was on a long losing streak and he lost like seven fights in a row and I was kind of watching his career from afar and I really felt bad for him and it was almost miraculous the way it happened. I sent him a message on November 15th, 2015, and I just asked if I could train him. I said I didn’t want any money, I just wanted to see If I could train him. Within the next year, he won two pro titles. So, it was pretty remarkable going from seven losses in a row to winning two pro titles,” said Greubel.
“I was there. It was amazing. It was what we were hoping for. Finally, the moment came and he was so proud. He had it everywhere he went. He rode around with it in the car. He took it into restaurants with him. He took it in the clubs with him. He took that belt everywhere,” said Clement.
In your mind what did Brandon mean to the city of Augusta, as far as his boxing legacy?
“Brandon was the great hope. Brandon was already coming from a neighborhood that was already frowned upon. However, that neighborhood has brought out a lot of champion athletes and successful people,” said Bunch.
“We were rooting for him. I wanted him to win. He wanted to win; just make Augusta proud. He wanted to make it to the top…to pay-per-view. He really wanted to make it and it’s amazing when you get that coming from your hometown,” said Clement.
While a fighter in the ring, Spencer was – above anything else – a family man.
“There was two things that Brandon loved more than anything and that was God and his family. He left his wife Tiffany and four beautiful kids and they’re just adorable. It’s just sad to see that they’re going to have to grow up now and not have their daddy there,” said Greubel.
“Brandon was very much so a big family man, which is one of the things I always liked about my brother because everything he did was for his family,” said Bunch.
During his life, Spencer touched many lives.
“His spirit was so tremendous. Even enemies or people that were against him…it was so hard to hate Brandon. It was so hard to be against him in any depiction of life. He was an awesome man,” said Bunch.
A GoFundMe has been set up to help support Spencer’s family.
Additionally, if you would like to donate clothes to Spencer’s children for the upcoming winter months, you can drop those off at any Greubel Mixed Martial Arts location. Below is a video with the children’s sizes.