Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) heavyweight champion Kevin Randleman, who also made a name for himself under the PRIDE FC banner, passed away on Thursday (Feb. 11, 2016) at the age of 44, as a result of complications from pneumonia.
Full details here.
His family issued a statement on Friday, courtesy of Facebook, confirming their tragic loss:
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, and Sandusky, Ohio communities share in the loss of Kevin's passing. While traveling on business, Kevin became ill and unexpectedly passed due to complications from pneumonia.
Kevin leaves behind a wife 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 family requests respect and privacy during this difficult time. Kevin's family is grateful for the outpouring of love and support.
Randleman, a decorated collegiate wrestler, retired from MMA in 2011 with a record of 17-16.
While "The Monster" was able to beat some stiff competition, like his 2004 upset over Mirko "Cro Cop" Filipovic in PRIDE, Randleman is perhaps most recognized for his epic slam against heavyweight legend Fedor Emelianenko just two months later.
Captured in condolences from UFC President Dana White:
I’m so sorry to hear about the passing of the legend Kevin Randleman. RIP Kevin "The Monster" Randleman pic.twitter.com/MTC4nFAF29— Dana White (@danawhite) February 12, 2016
Rest in peace, "Monster."