On Sept. 7, 2013, a fire in Sydney, Australia, took down three business, including CrossFit Iron Cove. Also affected were the Muay Thai and jiu-jitsu businesses housed in the same building.
The damage to the old factory building was extensive, with a few warped barbells and stacks of ash-covered bumper plates visible in the rubble. The building had been renovated and a second floor had been installed in June of this year. CrossFit Iron Cove owner Andre Lisboa says over AU$40,000 (approx. US$37,620) of equipment for CrossFit was consumed in the blaze. Lisboa did not insure the equipment as he thought theft was unlikely.
It’s a “horrible feeling to see something you’ve built just burning down,” says Lisboa.
He adds: “I wanted this place to be my dream, my dream coming true, and yeah it was for about two months.”
“You can still build somewhere else and start again, but it’s very heartbreaking to see your second home just gone,” says Thiago Braga, owner of Thiago Braga Fight Team.
Unbroken, Braga likens the current struggle to a fight: “Until we tap, until we pass out, until we’re broken, you know, we’re always going to come up and fight again, and that’s what jiu-jitsu is, you know. That’s what we are all about.”
Sitting in the ruins, he states: “We will never give up, we will never tap out, we will be back.”
Video by Michael McCoy.
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Additional reading: Rebuilding Hackleburg by Andréa Maria Cecil, published May 4, 2012.