Jake LaMotta, boxing's 'Raging Bull,' dies in his 90s

Legendary boxer 'Raging Bull' passes away

Real name Giacobbe LaMotta, the American's death was announced by a relatives on social media, with his eldest daughter Christi LaMotta paying tribute on Facebook.

LaMotta was born in 1922 to Italian parents in the Bronx area of NY and he took up boxing after the United States military rejected him on medical grounds.

Jake was eventually inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame. The two fighters squared off six times with Robinson winning five, but LaMotta dropped Robinson multiple times and his gutsy performance endeared him to boxing fans worldwide.

"I'm not afraid for myself", LaMotta said, while tearing up strips of paper.

LaMotta wrote about all of it in 1970's Raging Bull: My Story, a book that captured the imagination of Robert De Niro.

After LaMotta retired from boxing, he also did stand-up comedy and appeared in more than 15 movies including the Oscar-nominated The Hustler in 1961 opposite Paul Newman, and 1991's New Jack City.

He lost the world middleweight title in his final fight against Robinson on February 14, 1951, in a fight that became known as boxing's "Saint Valentine's Day Massacre". "The referee stopped the fight in the 13th round while I was still on my feet, with Robinson pounding me up against the ropes".

LaMotta and Robinson met again three weeks later with Robinson scoring another unanimous decision.

He apologized: "I thought I was right then". But it was the movie that unflinchingly portrayed him as a violent and abusive husband - he was married six times - that is remembered even more.

Ring Magazine had ranked LaMotta 52nd in "80 Greatest Fighters of The Past 80 Years" and hailed him as one of the "10 greatest middleweights of all time".

Despite his willingness to go with the flow, however, LaMotta didn't get his title shot until almost two years later, and at that had to come up with $20,000 for then-champion Marcel Cerdan.

He had four daughters and two sons, both deceased, and continued to live in NY, where he owned restaurants and even enjoyed a brief career as a stand-up comedian.

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