Known as the Saint Paul Thunderbolt, Billy Miske was a successful American light-heavyweight and heavyweight fighter in the 1920s whose career was cut short due to Bright’s Disease, a deadly kidney disorder.

Miske’s family struggled financially following his retirement, and though doctors only gave him a few months to live, he decided to fight once more in order to earn enough money to buy Christmas presents for his children.

Despite being too sick to train, Miske stepped into the ring for the final time on November 7th, 1923 and amazingly knocked out his opponent Bill Brennan in the fourth round.

Billy Miske died less that two months later from kidney failure in January 1924.

A relatively unknown story, Billy Miske’s final fight lives on as one of the most inspiring victories in sports history and deserves to be told to a wider audience.


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