By Ashley Dickson
Fabulousness is cropping up all over Utah Valley. We’ve got do-gooders who remain down-to-earth, innovators who thrive by going against the grain, and great minds gaining ground in their fields. And the best part of all? Our 50 most fabulous people are all homegrown — they live and work locally, blooming where they’ve been planted. Read on for a look at 50 of Utah Valley’s most fabulous people.
Ricky Lundell spent the past several years focusing on becoming the world’s best grappler. Mission accomplished.
It all started when he was picked on as a youngster. He learned to defend himself by studying Jiu-Jitsu. At age 19, Ricky became the youngest American to ever receive a black belt in Gracie Jiu-Jitsu.
From there, he moved on to the sport of grappling, which is similar to wrestling. In 2007, he won his bracket in the grappling world team trials, becoming the youngest USA grappling world team member. He went on to win the world championship in Turkey that year, officially earning the title of best grappler in the world. In 2008, he did it again.
Now Ricky is back in his home state, ready to launch his own grappling, wrestling and self defense school in Lindon.
“There are a lot of great things that come from my sport, like coaching women and kids in self defense,” Ricky says. “I’m also able to work with all levels, like Olympic athletes, wrestlers and professional fighters. I just love my sport.”