According to his publicist’s statement, Leon Spinks former world heavyweight champion, who was best known for defeating the legendary Muhammad Ali in 1978, passed away at the age of 67.
Mr Spinks had been fighting prostate and other cancers for the past five years but couldn’t beat this opponent.
The publicist informed Spinks wife Brenda Glur Spinks, close friends, and few family relatives were only present due to the covid restrictions and were by his bedside in his last moments.
Born in Missouri, Spinks represented the United States in the 1976 Olympics held in Montreal, Canada. Moreover, he fought in the light heavyweight and won a gold medal.
Later in his career, he faced the legendary Muhammad Ali in Las Vegas, Nevada, on 15th February 1978 to become the undisputed heavyweight boxing champion. Spink’s landed his iconic right hook to Ali in this fight. Since it was only Spinks’ eighth professional bout, it became one of the greatest upsets in boxing history.
Although Spinks and Ali met again after seven months at the Superdome in New Orleans. But, Ali defeated Spinks and reclaimed his heavyweight title.
He only got to fight for a heavyweight crown on one other occasion, in which he, unfortunately, lost to Larry Holmes in 1981.
On receiving the news of Spinks’s death, Holmes wrote on his Twitter. He added, “You gave me one hell of a fight, but you were always a good guy. You lived your life the way you wanted to, and it was a good one. I pray for you and may you Rest In Peace.”
Spinks retired in the year 1995 with a record of 26-17-3 with 14 knockouts. He was enlisted into the Nevada Boxing Hall of Fame in 2017.
Battle with cancer
Spinks was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2019. In December he was hospitalized in the same year when cancer spread to his bladder.
His publicist’s statement continued that, “Leon fought his battles with numerous illnesses resiliently, and never did he ever lost his trademark smile. Which Showed Spinks true determination, and how he never threw in the towel no matter how hard the fight was.”
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