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Wrestling meet renamed for Newtown victim

Jan 3, 2013, 5:40 PM EDT

Jack+Pinto Reuters

USA Wrestling announced Thursday that the Kiki Cup, an international Greco-Roman meet held in Colorado Springs each year, will be renamed the Jack Pinto Cup in honor of the 6-year-old wrestler killed during the Newtown shootings last month.

National coach Steve Fraser had first heard about Jack’s enthusiasm for the sport, and his “toughness,” in a newspaper story he read following the events, and felt the honor was more than appropriate.

“This young boy’s tough, matter-of-fact attitude is the essence of what the sport of wrestling is all about,” Fraser said. “The incredible loss of Jack Pinto and the others in this senseless tragedy will haunt us as we try and figure out why.

“Our hope is to honor Jack, his family and the others victims by naming this tough international Greco-Roman Olympic-style wrestling competition in his name. This is a reminder of how precious life really is.”

Christina “Kiki” Kelley, a sponsor whom the event was previously named after, has her own 7-year-old at home and called it a privilege to rename event after someone who had such a passion for the sport.

The Pinto family said they were overwhelmed by the outpouring of generosity and support from the wrestling community, and now consider themselves a part of the wrestling family.