Kevin Randleman, a former UFC heavyweight champion, died this week at the age of 44. His passing was announced in a statement issued by his family to MMAWeekly.com on Thursday.
— NCAA Wrestling (@ncaawrestling) February 12, 2016
“With saddened hearts, the Randleman family confirms the passing of Kevin “The Monster” Randleman. Behind the name, was a gentle soul and loyal friend whom will be missed by many who loved him beyond the cage. The Ohio State University, UFC, MMA, Sandusky, Ohio communities share in the loss of Kevin’s passing,” the statement read.
“While traveling on business, Kevin became ill and unexpectedly passed due to complications from pneumonia. Kevin leaves behind a wife, Elizabeth,and four extraordinary children to share his legacy with the world who mourns his passing. Life without “The Monster” will never be the same,” the statement continued.
It was back in 1999 that Kevin Randleman won the UFC heavyweight title. He defeated Pete Williams by unanimous decision at UFC 23, and defended the title against Pedro Rizzo UFC 26.
Randleman retired from fighting in 2011, but not before making a name for himself in the Japanese-based PRIDE organization.
Kevin Randleman’s family has requested privacy in the wake of his untimely passing.
— UFC Canada (@UFC_CA) February 12, 2016
“The family requests respect and privacy during this difficult time. Kevin’s family is grateful for the outpour of love and support,” they said in their statement.
Hopefully the media will respect the family’s request. It is incredibly painful to lose a family member so suddenly. Kevin Randleman’s family certainly doesn’t need requests for interviews or the media snapping photos in the midst of their grief.