Boxing referee Mills Lane dies at 85
Legendary boxing referee Mills Lane passes away peacefully 20 years after suffering a stroke.
At the age of 85, Mills Lane, the referee who ruled Mike Tyson out of the 1997 world boxing heavyweight title fight for biting Evander Holyfield's ears, passed away.
Lane's son, Tommy, said his father passed away quietly at a hospice in the Nevada city on Tuesday, according to the Reno Gazette-Journal. Lane had been in a degrading condition practically since suffering a stroke 20 years prior.
“It was a quick departure. He was comfortable and he was surrounded by his family,” Tommy told the journal.
Yahoo Sports cited Marc Ratner, the former executive director of the Nevada State Athletic Commission, saying “[Lane] was one of the most unique people I’ve ever met,” adding that “He was a law-and-order guy and very firm, but he was a wonderful guy and I loved speaking with him and spending time with him. He was a no-nonsense referee and even though he was a slight man, when he gave commands and told the fighters to break, they broke because they had so much respect for him.”
While serving in the Marine Corps, Lane began his career in boxing and before switching to refereeing, he had amassed a 10-1 record as a professional boxer.
Lane was renowned for screaming “Let’s get it on,” after giving fighters instructions before each match.
Years later, Mills presented his own court program, Judge Mills Lane. It is worth noting that Lane was a judge as well as a licensed attorney and district attorney.