Brandon Vera's still feels scars from serial killer home invasion

by Ben Fowlkes | source:

Lloyd Irvin woke up in the pre-dawn hours of October 4, 2008 to find two armed men had broken into his suburban Maryland home. They instructed him to get up and join them as they rounded up the home's other occupants, which included Irvin's wife and four year old son, as well as Brandon Vera, who was staying with Irvin while he did his training camp at Irvin's gym.

While one of the men held Vera and Irvin's family at gunpoint, the other led Irvin into a back bedroom. That's when Irvin saw his opening and took it, grabbing for the gun, ejecting the ammunition clip, and wrestling the weapon away from the gunman. Disarmed, the man shouted out a warning to his accomplice and they both fled the house, leaving Irvin, his family, and Vera all unharmed, but badly shaken.

"After that, I don't think MMA was number one in my life anymore," said Vera. "After that home invasion, I was like, hey, I could have been dead today, and there's still so much I want to do. There's so much I want to experience, so much I want to do with my wife. MMA just wasn't the number one priority in my life anymore. Without me knowing, my life rearranged itself."

"I did some really crazy stuff at the house for home protection ... For a while I had a protection company follow my wife around. It was crazy times."

Vera lost a split decision to Keith Jardine, then won two straight, before dropping fights to Randy Couture, Jon Jones, and Thiago Silva, and getting cut by the UFC.

That's when he knew he'd lost "it."

"People keep asking me what "it" is," Vera said. "But if you've never lost "it" there's no way I can explain what "it" is."

Vera embarked on a road trip, teaching seminars at gyms across the USA. "Somewhere along those 8,500 miles is where I found it again."

Police arrested a suspect in the home invasion case that they believed was linked to multiple murders in similar situations -- a man the local police chief deemed a "serial killer" -- who will now spend the rest of his life in prison following sentencing.

Three months after the Silva loss, the NSAC changed the result to "No Contest" following Silva's blood test anomaly, and admission to PED use. The UFC welcomed Vera back, to face Eliot Marshall at UFC 137 in Las Vegas Saturday night.

"It's not a new chapter; it's a whole new book," said Vera. "The path I was on before, I don't know where I was going or where I got lost. Somewhere I made a left when I should have made a right. I don't know, but I lost it, and now I've found it."

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tags: UFC 137   Lloyd Irvin   Brandon Vera (detail)  


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Recent Comments »

TheSaver site profile image  

10/25/11 11:23 PM by TheSaver

I always hope to see the old Vera

The Sultan site profile image  

10/25/11 10:38 PM by The Sultan

 I actually like Vera a lot....He was on pace to make huge waves in the UFC.....He got outwrestled in a few fights and everyone talks like he's a horrible fighter....he's a great fighter and has a great outlook on training and such. I'd like to train with Vera someday.

Tomato Can site profile image  

10/25/11 10:19 PM by Tomato Can

Yes, and he's also a huckster who sells "real estate secrets" to idiots. The two are not mutually exclusive, and if you were not engaged in some sort of hero worship for the man, perhaps you could see that.

Humphrey site profile image  

10/25/11 8:39 PM by Humphrey

it reminds me a lot of karo parysian. same MO.Every time you promise something then fail to deliever it you lost even more credibility. Vera ran out in my eyes.All the way back to him demanding the UFC pay him big money, then he turns around and is begging to keep his job.he's gotten many more breaks than he deserved. But i think if he'd have just spent as much time doing the things he promised as he did telling everyone about it, we'd be in a different place.I remember this guy went from bragging about how he was going ot hold two belts, to getting cut. but even then he didn't learn to be humble. At this point I don't think he ever will.

ABE FROMAN site profile image  

10/25/11 8:12 PM by ABE FROMAN

It's true, he should just show it. He puts a LOT of pressure on himself by making these proclamations before he fights. 

Humphrey site profile image  

10/25/11 7:59 PM by Humphrey

it's a broken record with that guy, he blows it, then has a revelation and becomes a changed man about twice a year.give it a rest. SHOW it, don't say it. because nobody is buying it now.

X_Rated site profile image  

10/25/11 7:54 PM by X_Rated

Pretty much

Authority Figure site profile image  

10/25/11 7:46 PM by Authority Figure

He's won championships. He's trained champions. He could blindfold himself, twirl in a circle and point at a random student - who could, upon request, thoroughly kick your ass using the skills learned in class. This is the truth.

FingerorMoon site profile image  

10/25/11 6:12 PM by FingerorMoon

Well he was 1-3 before that as well, so 3-6 before the Silva fight was changed to NC.And then there was the the time he got in a contract dispute with the UFC and took a year off because he felt as the future heavyweight champ (and simultaneous LHW champ according to him) they should pay him for his potential future worth upfront .......he has since apologized for being young and surrounded by ass kissers .....but you can guarantee Dana remembers that shit.

Flannerz site profile image  

10/25/11 6:05 PM by Flannerz

I hope we get to see the Vera who first entered the UFC again