Jake "The Raging Bull" LaMotta Dead At Age 96

Posted September 21, 2017

LaMotta's fiancé of 25-years, Denise Baker, confirmed that LaMotta died of Dysphagia pneumonia at Palm Garden Nursing Home, in Miami, Florida, where he was given hospice care in recent weeks by Seasons Hospice. According to ESPN, LaMotta held the middleweight title between 1949 and 1951.

Reflecting on his career, LaMotta once said: "The three toughest fighters I ever fought were Sugar Ray Robinson, Sugar Ray Robinson and Sugar Ray Robinson".

His 1970 biography Raging Bull: My Story was adapted into the 1980 movie starring De Niro in the lead role.

The movie won an Oscar for best film editing and eight total nominations.

The fight was eventually stopped while he was slumped against the ropes in the 13th round, and although Robinson won again it meant he finished his career having never knocked LaMotta down. "Your book inspired me to take up the sport as a 12 year old". However, his eldest son, Jake LaMotta Jr, died of liver cancer in February 1998, and his youngest son, Joseph LaMotta, died in September that year in the crash of Swissair Flight 111. After his retirement from boxing, he owned and managed bars and tried his hand at acting. He said he was promised a shot at a title.

He won the world middleweight title in June 1948 when he beat Frenchman Marcel Cerdan, who refused to come out for the start of the tenth round.

Martin Scorsese's 1980 film Raging Bull was based on LaMotta's memoir of the same name.

LaMotta was married seven times, his last marriage in 2013.

A daughter, Christi LaMotta, announced his death in a Facebook post but did not provide additional details. By 19, LaMotta had honed his skills enough to go pro.

The International Boxing of Fame, who inducted LaMotta in 1990, revealed he began boxing at a young age when his father made him fight other neighborhood kids in The Bronx to entertain adults. Vikki later passed away in 2005 at age 75.