Gracie Barra Black Belt Competitor Joshua Bacallao Diagnosed with Rare And Aggressive Cancer

The jiu-jitsu community is being called on once more to help a brother in need.
Gracie Barra black belt competitor Joshua Bacallao was diagnosed with a rare and aggressive form of cancer.

From Gofundme:

“Earlier this year, Prof. Joshua Bacallao was given an amazing opportunity to lead Gracie Barra Kirkland. Shortly after returning to Seattle, and competing in a number of higher profile grappling events including the ADCC trials, Fight2Win,  Shugyo Invitational, and GsubX, Joshua was diagnosed with a rare, aggressive cancer – a leiomyosarcoma. This type of smooth muscle tumor only occurs in 1 in 5 million people.

Much of this may come as a shock as Joshua chose to be silent about the challenges ahead. However, anyone who knows Josh likely isn’t surprised by his stoic demeanor. His 8.5-hour surgery (on Tuesday, Oct. 2nd of this year) went “as planned.” Dr. Jonathan Wright at UW Medical Center removed his bladder and rebuilt a new one with part of Joshua’s small intestine. Dr. Wright’s intent is to get him back to as near normal as possible. Fortunately, Prof. Joshua has an amazing attitude and has plans to return to the highest level of grappling, while helping all of his students be the best they can at Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.

Even in a best case scenario, Prof. Joshua is looking at a number of months of rest and rehabilitation once he is released from UW Medical Center. Fortunately, Gracie Barra Kirkland has stepped up its support for Joshua and his family by providing full pay while he is recovering. Unfortunately, this isn’t enough to handle the unforeseen costs that Joshua is facing, including non-reimbursed medical expenses, co-pays, rehabilitation, child care, home care and currently unknown future expenses. With this in mind it is our hope that enough money can be raised to help Joshua and family keep this as a temporary health setback and avoid any long-term worry about finances.”


Jiu-jitsu times sends well wishes of speedy and full recovery to Bacallao and his family.

You can donate to the Bacallao family here GO FUNDME

Previous articleMake White Belt Life Easier By Listening To This Advice From A Black Belt
Next articleBoss Mom Mackenzie Dern On Fighting Four Months After Childbirth
Emil Fischer is an active brown belt competitor under Pablo Angel Castro III training at Strong Style Mixed Martial Arts and Training Center near Cleveland Ohio ( and teaching at Ground Up BJJ ( For more information, other articles, and competition videos check out his athlete pages at and Emil is sponsored by Meerkatsu (, discount code EmilKatsu), Eddy's On Coventry, Cleveland Cryo ( discount code EmilCryo,) NottaRookie, The Terphouse (, used discount code COOKIES), Trap And Roll Soap Company ( discount code COOKIES) Impact Mouthguards ( discount code EMILIMPACT), North South Jiu Jitsu Underwear, as well as a brand ambassador for Ludwig Van ( discount code FAMILY) and Vanguard Kimono.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here