Kevin Randleman’s family confirms sudden passing; Randy Couture pens beautiful tribute

By Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief

Kevin Randleman’s family have released a statement confirming the MMA legend’s untimely death on Thursday. The 44-year-old former UFC Heavyweight Champion fell ill with pneumonia, dying from complications after going to the hospital.

The Randleman family posted the following comment to Facebook confirming the sad news:

With saddened hearts, the Randleman family confirms the passing of Kevin “The Monster” Randleman. Behind the name, was a gentle soul & 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. While traveling on business, Kevin became ill & un-exectedly passed due to complications from pneumonia. Kevin leaves behind a wife & 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 & privacy during this difficult time. Kevin’s family is grateful for the outpour of Love & support.

Friends, former foes, confidants, colleagues, and more have been reacting to the news on social media over the last 12 hours, with much heartbreak and sorrow being expressed.

Randy Couture, the man who took the UFC Heavyweight Title from Randleman back in 2000, penned perhaps the most beautiful tribute via Instagram:

Kevin my friend, my sorrows swell and my heart sinks as the sun sets on our journey. I embrace the memories of our time together in laughter, in the heat of combat, and in tears as we stumbled through this world. I never dreamed that I would sit alone decades later in reflection at the adventures we shared. I see your swagger and smile, eyes twinkle with devious delight as you bounded high in intimidating preparation for battle always aware that all eyes were on you. Magnetic and powerful you seemed to glow with anticipation at what the struggle would bring. You showed me the reward of daily toil and the joys of reckless abandon. You lived a life unimagined by most with a philosophy of someone who seemed to know both sides of the coin. We battled vicious demons, some side by side, and reveled in the victories always willing to share the spoils with any one in need. This life you led laid open an example of happiness and freedom for countless souls including mine that we would never have had the strength or courage to face on our own. We went willingly with you and witnessed mercy, compassion, and the miracle that was you to all those you touched and wisdom through your falls. There is no explanation, excuse, or apology for your life because it requires none! The good was great, the bad was – well bad. It was 100% Kevin and [I’m] blessed to have shared it. See you on the other side. Randy Couture

Penick’s Analysis: Many more are mourning his passing today. He’s gone far too young, and under tragically sudden circumstances, that it’s hard to come to terms with. It’s absolutely awful for his family, most especially his children, and we send nothing but positive thoughts and condolences their way during this difficult time.

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