Skip to main content

The combat sports world is in mourning today after the death was announced of Olympic gold medalist and four-weight world champion Pernell Whitaker, who passed away after he was struck by a car at an intersection in Virginia Beach on Sunday night. He was 55.

The fighter, who was known throughout his 46 fight career as ‘Sweat Pea’, died at the scene according to local reports. The incident occurred at 10.04pm local time and is currently being investigated by Virginia Beach Police Department and it is understood that the identity of the driver is known to police.

Tributes to the fighter, considered by many to be among the finest of his generation, have been flooding in since news of his death was first reported.

Whitaker’s professional career lasted between 1984 and 2001, during which time he captured world titles lightweight, light welterweight, welterweight, and light middleweight. He was ranked between 1993 and 1997 as the world’s best pound-for-pound boxer by The Ring magazine and is acclaimed as one of the greatest defensive fighters in history.