Boxing legend Joe Frazier died today after a brief battle with liver cancer, according to his agent.
His family released the following statement late Monday night:
We The Family of the 1964 Olympic Boxing Heavyweight Gold Medalist, Former Heavyweight Boxing Champion and International Boxing Hall of Fame Member Smokin’ Joe Frazier, regrets to inform you of his passing. He transitioned from this life as “One of God’s Men,” on the eve of November 7, 2011at his home in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. We thank you for your prayers for our Father and vast outpouring of love and support.
Respectfully, we request time to grieve privately as a family. Our father’s home going celebration will be announced as soon as possible. Thank you for your understanding.
“Smokin Joe,” a small yet ferocious fighter, is credited as the first man to beat Muhammad Ali back in 1971 in what was considered the “Fight of the Century.” It was Frazier’s devastating left hook that dropped Ali in the 15th round at Madison Square Garden in 1971.
Frazier’s agent Darren Prince reported that the boxing champ was surrounded by his family when he passed away at around 10:00 pm EST Monday (Nov 7) at his home in Philadelphia.
Frazier had been under the care of a home hospice after being diagnosed with the disease just 3 weeks ago.
He was 67 years old.