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Why did Sonny Liston die?

Discussion in 'Classic Boxing Forum' started by catasyou, Dec 28, 2008.



  1. catasyou

    catasyou Lucian Bute Full Member

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    What were the reasons?The police say drug overdose but it's clearly not the case.Was he murdered by underworld conections?Anybody got any info?
     
  2. SteveO

    SteveO MSW Full Member

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    Well, the drug overdose part seems fairly factual, from what I've heard.

    The question is, did he do it, or did someone shoot him full of drugs? Those close to Liston said he was afraid of needles and didn't do drugs at all.
     
  3. McGrain

    McGrain Diamond Dog Staff Member

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    Pfffffft. How long have you got?

    Nobody knows my man. Incidently, why so sure it was not a drug overdose?
     
  4. catasyou

    catasyou Lucian Bute Full Member

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    I don't believe in the overdose thing because he was afraid of needles and he wasn't known to take any source of drugs and didn't seem to.He did drink some apparently.
     
  5. McGrain

    McGrain Diamond Dog Staff Member

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    Supposedly Joe Louis was using Heroin at the time, and Liston was hanging with Louis an awful lot - as Tosches put it, "if anyone could Liston past his phobia of needles it would be Joe". Regardless, there are other ways to injest heroin.

    I'll dig out some stuff on his death in the next couple of days if I remember, and if Stonhands doesn't happen along first.
     
  6. catasyou

    catasyou Lucian Bute Full Member

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    Ok,thanks man:good
     
  7. Mendoza

    Mendoza Dominating a decade Full Member

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    Liston likely crossed criminals.
     
  8. Russell

    Russell Boxing Junkie Full Member

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    Little known fact documented in a few Liston pieces, such as Unsolved Mysterie's piece on his death.

    He, as his friends and family tell it, met men of organized crime in a restaurant shortly before the Wepner fight. Wepner had proven ties to different shady people, that much is well known.

    The fight being thrown was discussed. Sonny's reaction isn't exactly known, but he was neither too hot or too cold on the idea. Neither extreme came out.

    Come the night of the Wepner fight he told his corner he was afraid to keep hitting the guy as the fight went on. But even Liston's held back, clubbing power seemingly tore Wepner's face to shreds. More then likely more damaging then really unloading on the man and going for a KO.

    This more then likely pissed off men who had prodigious amounts of money riding on that fight. Cue one loathed, decade past his best ex-champion that no one cared about in the first place being killed.

    The Bayonne Bleeder's legendary tendency to cut may have cost Sonny Liston his life.
     
  9. catasyou

    catasyou Lucian Bute Full Member

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    The ''that no one cared about'' part really sounds like a hater.
     
  10. sitiyzal

    sitiyzal ................. Full Member

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    Maybe he was accidentally overdosed by Louis :tired.
     
  11. OLD FOGEY

    OLD FOGEY Boxing Junkie Full Member

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    Liston died of natural causes. The police had no idea what he died of, other than guesswork. He had been dead a week and was badly decomposed. The police found evidence of drugs in the house and jumped to a conclusion.

    The autopsy described the cause of death, according to THE DEVIL AND SONNY LISTON, as "probable myocardial anoxia due to coronary insufficiency". Unlike the Ernie Schaaf autopsy report, I can understand what this pathologist is saying. Liston died of a heart attack caused by a lack of oxygen going to the cardiac muscle. The underlying cause was coronary artery disease.

    I guess this is all just too prosaic for all the conspiracy theorists concerning Liston, but it really is not all that unusual. I know many will reject the autopsy report, but I see no plausible reason for the coroner to lie.
     
  12. Russell

    Russell Boxing Junkie Full Member

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    Do you have any idea how disliked Liston was when he was actually alive?

    Methinks you're taking what I said differently then it was intended.
     
  13. OLD FOGEY

    OLD FOGEY Boxing Junkie Full Member

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    New York Times--Jan 20, 1971

    Las Vegas, Nev, Jan 20, UPI---

    "The former heavyweight champion, Sonny Liston, died of lung congestion brought on by poor oxygen and nutrient blood supply to the heart muscles, the Clark County Coroner, Mark Herman, ruled today. 'The autopsy and microscopic and toxicologic examination failed to provide an exact cause of the shortage of nutrient blood and oxygen to heart muscles,' said Herman.

    He said traces of morphine and codeine were found in the body tissues but 'not in sufficient amounts' to have caused death.

    Herman said the amounts of morphine and codeine corresponded to the amounts that would normally result from a breakdown of heroin in the body.

    Liston's body was found by his wife, Geraldine, when she returned from a trip. The coroner's office said he probably had been dead five days."



    That is the full article from the New York Times. According to THE DEVIL AND SONNY LISTON "the words 'the exact cause of undetermined by autopsy' are appended in parentheses to the diagnosis of 'probably myocardial anoxia due to coronary insufficiency': but the implication is that the anoxia was caused by the narrowing of the fibrous small blood vessels described in the autopsy's microscropic findings'

    My conclusion:

    1. Liston probably used heroin, but it had already broken down to codeine and morphine in his body. The amounts found in the body were not enough to have caused death.

    2. Coronary artery disease was the real cause of death.
     
  14. Permy

    Permy Big Slick Full Member

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    Somebody has to know something .. lol
     
  15. MRBILL

    MRBILL Boxing Junkie Full Member

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    Sonny Liston and his demise was set-up like a mother-sucker..... By 1970, Sonny was washed-up and no longer useful to the mobsters.... What was Sonny gonna do to earn cabbage? I tell you---NOTHING WORTH WHILE!! The Mob knew that and decided it was time for Sonny Liston to pass on.... He wore out his welcome on life..... It happens..... Yes, Drugs were a Factor, but, that was part of the cover up..... In my view, Sonny Liston was taken out of the picture.....

    MR.BILL:shock::patsch:deal:hi::admin