Palelei began fighting challenge and Vale Tudo matches in 1992 and then began competing in regulated Mixed Martial Arts shows in 1995. He continued to fight primarily in the US until 2003 when he retired with a record of 25-2-1,having competed in many notable fighting shows including Shidokan, Total Combat and the IronHeart Crown.
Palelei returned to the cage in 2007 at the Chicago Cage Fight to raise money for the Fighter for Life Cancer Fighting Campaign a non-profit campaign he co-founded dedicated to supporting holistic cancer education, research and treatment. Palelei and his campaign have been featured in various online and print media including, Sherdog, MMA Fighting, and the Chicago Sun Times.
Founding of The Fighter for Life CampaignEdit
In an interview with www.mmafighting.com in 2007, Palelei explained what led him to found Fighter for Life: I became aware of these alternative therapies after I met two people who had fought their own battles with cancer and won using alternative therapy called Cesium/Hi PH Therapy. They did this, naturally and holistically, without any toxic chemicals or brutal surgery. Both of them are living testimonials to the success of these treatments. I thought it incredible that there were life saving natural treatments for Cancer and hardly anybody knew about them.
Knowing that these unheralded alternative treatments had saved their lives whilst millions of others suffered and died was astounding enough for Palelei, but it wasn’t until that fight came right to his doorstep that it really hit home and he did something about it.
"In 2000 my Father was diagnosed with bladder cancer. He went through chemotherapy several times, but the growths returned and started to spread. Early in 2005 we began to research alternative cancer therapies and he finally settled on a herbal remedy called Essiac. [Essiac] is a herbal tea that came from a Native Ojibwa medicine man and was introduced to the world by a Canadian nurse Rene Caisse. Interestingly enough, in 1938 Essiac was three votes away from being voted in the Canadian Parliament as the official cure for cancer in Canada. My Father discontinued all chemotherapy treatments and took his daily dose of Essiac. I am happy to say my Dad has been winning his battle. He has been back to his Doctors for five separate cystoscopies over the last two years and they have come back clear each time. Has he beaten his disease? So far, yes. He is winning his war. My Fathers victory over the disease by natural means is what led me to my decision to come out of retirement, dust off the gloves and step back into the ring. This time not for money, fame or even the thrill of victory. This time for a cause. A mission if you will. A Campaign to help others beat Cancer."
In Sherdog magazine Vaughan stated "I believe that holistic therapies can save lives. My hope is that through this website and the actions that I take inside and outside of the ring, I can bring some attention to these options. Hopefully, others who are suffering will be motivated to gather as much information as they can on holistic treatments, and in turn arm themselves with the information that could help save their lives. In the fight against cancer, the more information you have, the greater your chances of survival, of victory, will be."
The Fighter for Life Campaign is a not-for-profit cancer fighting campaign founded in 2006 by Mixed Martial Arts fighters and fan’s dedicated to supporting cancer education, research and treatment and committed to raising awareness of the unheralded holistic and integrative cancer treatments that have saved the lives of thousands.
Palelei is also the lead vocalist and guitarist for experimental rock band "Kill fool Killjoy"
- 2000, 2001 Ironheart Crown Heavyweight Champion
- 2001, 2002 Total Fight Challenge Heavyweight Champion
- 1999 JKD Challenge Heavyweight Champion
- IHC, UA, TFC, TC, IHC, Shidokan, CC, CCF, CU veteran.