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How Incredible Tragedy Gave Eduard Folayang His Unbreakable Spirit

Eduard “Landslide” Folayang’s career has been defined by his ability to bounce back from adversity and emerge as a stronger competitor.

After any defeat, the Filipino hero – who returns against Eddie “The Underground King” Alvarez in the ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix semifinals at ONE: DAWN OF HEROES – always finds a way to move past disappointment and go on to great things.

The loss of five siblings was a painful experience for Eduard Folayang, but the Filipino legend harnessed his emotions to provide his family with a better life ????

The loss of five siblings was a painful experience for Eduard "The Landslide" Folayang, but the Filipino legend harnessed his emotions to provide his family with a better life ????????: Manila | 2 August | 7PM | ONE: DAWN OF HEROES????: Get your tickets at ???? http://bit.ly/oneheroes19????: Check local listings for global TV broadcast????: Watch on the ONE Super App ???? http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp ????‍????: Prelims LIVE on Facebook | Prelims + 2 Main-Card bouts LIVE on Twitter

Posted by ONE Championship on Sunday, July 14, 2019

His determination to push through heartbreak, which has led to him becoming one of the most celebrated athletes in the Philippines, was shaped by his experience with tragedy as a child.

“When I was young, my mother told me that five of my siblings passed away – I was already in my elementary years when my mother told me about it,” he says. 

“Their ages were a bit far from each other when we lost them – I think the eldest was 7, the other was 5, another was only a year old, while the other two were stillborn.”

All of this happened before the Folayangs moved to Baguio City, where their son trains as part of the world-renowned Team Lakay.

Living in a remote area in the neighboring Mountain Province meant they had limited access to proper healthcare, which made what should have been easily-curable diseases life-threatening or worse. 

Who will be left standing when lightweight legends Eduard Folayang and Eddie Alvarez square off on 2 August?

Who will be left standing when lightweight legends Eduard "The Landslide" Folayang and Eddie Alvarez square off on 2 August?????: Manila | 2 August | 5PM | ONE: DAWN OF HEROES????: Get your tickets at ???? http://bit.ly/oneheroes19????: Check local listings for global TV broadcast????: Watch on the ONE Super App ???? http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp ????‍????: Prelims LIVE on Facebook | Prelims + 2 Main-Card bouts LIVE on Twitter

Posted by ONE Championship on Sunday, July 21, 2019

“It was very hard for them to go to the hospital because they had to travel for about two or three days to get there,” Folayang reveals.

“Sometimes you think it’s just a normal thing that your child will have that kind of fever, but sometimes, it leads to their sudden death.

“Back then, we had to rely more on traditional medicine than advanced or modern medicine because it was easily accessible – therapeutic leaves, ginger tea, and other herbal concoctions were readily available for us on the farm.

“We lacked the knowledge about proper health care, which I think contributed to the high mortality rate [in our area] back then. We needed to find doctors to tell us what was wrong with them, but because the hospitals were too far. They died even without getting the chance to be seen by a doctor.”

“Landslide’s” parents were determined to see their four surviving children prosper, so they did everything they could to provide a better future for them.

They moved to Baguio, and though they were illiterate, both his mother and father found a way to give their children an education so they could pull themselves out of poverty by working multiple jobs. That meant they would never have to suffer as they had.

Eduard Folayang's greatest motivation ????‍????‍????‍????

Eduard "The Landslide" Folayang's greatest motivation ????‍????‍????‍????????: Manila | 2 August | 7PM | ONE: DAWN OF HEROES????: Get your tickets at ???? http://bit.ly/oneheroes19????: Check local listings for global TV broadcast????: Watch on the ONE Super App ???? http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp ????‍????: Prelims LIVE on Facebook | Prelims + 2 Main-Card bouts LIVE on Twitter

Posted by ONE Championship on Thursday, July 18, 2019

Watching their tireless efforts and ability to persevere through adversity inspired their son to learn the attitude that would help him become a ONE Lightweight World Champion.

“In the city, we have easy access to proper healthcare as well as facilities that will help in our education. They gained the chance to give us a better life if they just worked hard for it,” he says.

“Because of that, they did everything to provide our needs. It may have been difficult, but their love as parents pushed them to do everything in their power to put food on the table.

“That’s the thing that I appreciate from my parents – they never give up. Even though they lost that number of children, they still have that spirit to be able to raise and shape who we became now.

“My parents always told us to take care of ourselves, to be healthy as much as possible, learn how to be tough to live, and know our responsibilities – not only to ourselves, but also to the community and to our family.”

Eduard Folayang will do whatever it takes to get his lightweight ???? back. The Team Lakay legend faces Eddie Alvarez in the ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix semifinals on 2 August!

Eduard "The Landslide" Folayang will do whatever it takes to get his lightweight ???? back. The Team Lakay legend faces Eddie Alvarez in the ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix semifinals on 2 August! ????: Manila | 2 August | 5PM | ONE: DAWN OF HEROES????: Get your tickets at ???? http://bit.ly/oneheroes19????: Check local listings for global TV broadcast????: Watch on the ONE Super App ???? http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp ????‍????: Prelims LIVE on Facebook | Prelims + 2 Main-Card bouts LIVE on Twitter

Posted by ONE Championship on Friday, July 19, 2019

The lessons they passed on to their offspring helped them to achieve great success – especially for “Landslide.”

Though his mother and father wanted him to be a policeman, and he started a career as a teacher, his accomplishments in martial arts have made him a national hero and helped to support his own family.

Today, Folayang’s parents can enjoy the company of happy, healthy grandchildren, and know their hard work paid off in ways they could not have imagined.

He may have lost his belt in his last match, but just like he has done before, he is determined to bounce back next Friday, 2 August with one of the biggest wins of his career at the Mall Of Asia Arena in Manila, Philippines.

Folayang’s ability to come back strong will once again be tested in a dream match between two of the best mixed martial arts legends from the East and the West, but he is sure he can get back on the winning track toward World Title contention.

“I’m still highly motivated, and the will to claim this win has never diminished,” he adds.

eduard folayang eddie alvarez special edition shirt manila philippines Dawn Of Heroes

Manila | 2 August | 7PM | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast | Tickets: http://bit.ly/oneheroes19