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Olympic boxing gold medalist Pete Rademacher dies at 91

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Former Olympic boxing champion Pete Rademacher died on Thursday at the Ohio Veterans Home, according to The Associated Press.

He was 91.

Rademacher won a gold medal at the 1956 Summer Olympics in Melbourne after he knocked out Russian Lev Mukhim in the first round of the heavyweight title match. He was also unanimously chosen to carry the American flag during the closing ceremonies of those games in Australia. 

He then made his professional fighting debut with a title bout against Floyd Patterson, and is still the only boxer to fight for the heavyweight title in his debut. He knocked Patterson down in the second round of that fight, per the report, but eventually fell in the sixth round. 

Rademacher finished his career with a 17-6-1 record. 

The Washington native then moved to Ohio with his wife and three daughters, and sold housing lots until they both retired. He had been living in a nursing home with dementia for years, per the report. His brain will be donated for medical research. 

Pete Rademacher closes his eyes and winces as he takes a glancing left hook to the face from Floyd Patterson, the champ, in their heavyweight title boxing match in Seattle on August 23, 1957. Rademacher, in his first pro fight, was knocked down in the third, several times in the fifth, then counted out in the sixth round. (AP Photo)

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