BOXING legend Frank Bruno was forced to take to social media on Saturday to reassure people he wasn’t dead.The former world heavyweight champion said he was left shocked by an online report he’d passed away.
Frank Bruno took to Twitter on Saturday morning to deny reports he had diedCredit: Twitter
An article was published on December 2 saying the British icon had passed away aged 60Credit: News Group Newspapers Ltd
The fake report led to several calls into the manager of the 60-year-old who is due to appear in Sheffield on Saturday night for an event with fans.
Much to the relief of Frank’s supporters, he took to social media to reassure them he was safe and well.
In a Twitter post shared Saturday morning he said: “Morning, I was bemused to see this yesterday suggesting I had died!”
He later said: “Chill. I’m alive and well and writing my Christmas cards and working tonight and looking forward to meeting my fans in Sheffield.”
Last month Bruno told the Sun how he was celebrating hitting the landmark 60th birthday.
In it he revealed he regards Tyson Fury as the most inspirational sports star on the planet.
He told how the Gypsy King was now following in his own legendary footsteps – both in and out of the ring.
In an exclusive interview to mark turning 60, Frank said Fury has taken on the mantle of being Britain’s best heavyweight boxer, but deserves even more credit for his work championing mental health awareness in troubled youngsters.
And Frank told how his friendship with the Gypsy King was even helping him to win his own battle with mental health problems after years of trying to overcome his demons.
Frank told The Sun: “I’ve seen a lot over my 60 years but witnessing the way Tyson has turned his life around may well top the lot.
“Nobody has done more in the past few years to raise awareness of mental health problems than Tyson.
“He’s the most inspirational sports star on the planet in my book.
“We’ve both had difficult days but it has made us great friends and I am now seeing first-hand how Tyson is truly on a mission, inside and outside of the ring, to help others.
“Tyson has told me he even wants to try and find a cure for mental health problems one day so others don’t go through what we have.
‘I’D BACK FURY’
“And I’d back him to do it. I’d trust Tyson more than most of the politicians around these days.”
In 1995, the year before he quit the ring, Bruno defeated Oliver McCall at Wembley to win the WBC Heavyweight Championship, which is still ranked among British sport’s greatest moments.
As well as a glittering career which saw him win 40 out of 45 fights, he has also become a national treasure for his career on stage and screen.
A poll in 1996, the year he retired, ranked him the second most popular Briton, behind Princess Diana.
But five years after retiring, Bruno was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and his life unravelled.
The illness has since seen him sectioned – detained as a psychiatric hospital inpatient – four times, most recently last summer.
Now he is planning to open a string of mental health centres to help those who have gone through similar struggles.
‘HARDEST 12 MONTHS OF MY LIFE’
Frank said: “The last 12 months have been probably the hardest in my life.
“Last summer I couldn’t have put my hand on my heart and said I’d have been out of hospital to celebrate my birthday.
“I thought I had things under control but Covid and lockdown just pulled the rug from under my feet.
“I struggled to cope with being locked down and losing friends from Covid. I had to reset and get better. And I did.
“But if getting my freedom back and turning 60 has shown me anything it is that there is still so much to be fighting for.
“I’ve got a lot I still want to do. But it is not about belts or titles now. It is about supporting others.”
Bruno has just released his new book 60 Years A Fighter – which tells the story of his remarkable life.
Frank Bruno shows off his incredible body as he works out with punching bag More