Rising MMA star Shalie Lipp tragically died in a car crash on Sunday less than two weeks before her next big fight. The 21-year-old from Colorado died in a two-car accident on Interstate 94 in Minnesota on Sunday morning, with Lipp being the passenger of a 2015 Chevrolet Malibu, according to reports.
According to the Minnesota State Patrol, the car which Lipp was in, "made contact" with a 2017 Jeep Cherokee traveling eastbound on the Red River Bridge around 11.30 am on Sunday. Lipp was the only occupant of the two vehicles not wearing an incident, with the others escaping uninjured from the crash.
According to reports, everyone inside the two carsâexcept for Lippâwas wearing a seatbelt. Joseph Vital Trottier, 35, of West Fargo, who is reportedly Lipp's academy coach, was the one driving the Chevrolet.
The updated report of the patrol stated that it was the Chevrolet that made initial contact with the Jeep but did not go into further detail.
Lipp was slated to fight at Ignite No Mercy 11's main event on May 20 at Detroit Lakes' Kent Freeman Arena.
The MMA athlete had only recently returned to America to complete her preparations for her amateur fight after spending the whole of April in Thailand. She was a student at the Academy of Combat Arts in Fargo, Minnesota.
According to a recent report by the Wahpenton Daily News, Lipp also excelled in gymnastics and track and field during her time in school.
Gone too Soon
Lipp was the daughter of North Dakota State College of Science Hall of Famer Jennie Bucholz and local sportscaster Rollie Lipp.
A homage to the late star was given by Eric Sweeney, who is said to be Lipp's personal trainer. "My heart is absolutely broken. You were such a wonderful human, full of promise and drive.
"One of the few people I've ever met that was truly reaching for greatness. And I will never forget you. It is beyond my mind's capacity today to think that I won't see you this week ...or ever again. We were just cracking the code.
"Being your friend will change me forever. It already has. Thank you for all of the moments. All of our discussions, both personal and professional. The laughs, the tears, and every emotion in between. I will remember all of them. I am grateful for all of them."
Lipp's tragic death epitomizes a difficult year for MMA, with Elias Theodorou, Anthony 'Rumble' Johnson, and Stephan Bonner, all former UFC fighters all having died in 2022.