Name: Ron Lyle
Birthplace: Dayton, Ohio, USA
Died: 2011-11-26 (Age:70)
Hometown: Denver, Colorado, USA
Height: 6′ 3″ / 191cm
Reach: 76″ / 193cm
Boxing Record: click
Trainers: Bobby Lewis, Chickie Ferrara & Patty Colovito
Ron Lyle came out of prison to become one of heavyweight boxing's most feared punchers during the early 1970s.
Lyle was born to William and Nellie Lyle. He was one of 19 children, and the only one to get in trouble with the law. When he was in his teens, Lyle was arrested and charged with first degree murder in the shooting death of 21-year-old Douglas Byrd in a gang fight. Lyle was convicted of second degree murder and sentenced to 15-25 years at Canon City State Penitentiary. While in prison, Lyle was knifed and underwent a 7 hour operation; twice pronounced dead on the operating table, he needed 35 pints of blood to keep him alive. Lyle credited Lt. Cliff Mattax the athletic director at the prison with getting him interested in boxing and changing his life. While in prison, Lyle had excelled in baseball, basketball, and football. Lyle fought on his prison's boxing team. In his first match, Lyle was defeated by Texas Johnson. However, Lyle never lost a prison boxing match again. After serving seven-and-a-half years in prison, Lyle was paroled on Sunday, November 22, 1969.
After prison, Lyle joined the Denver Elks Gym and started boxing for Bill Daniels. Lyle's first amateur victory was a third round knockout over Fred Houpe. His amateur career lasted 14 months, and he compiled a record of 25-4 with 17 knockouts. He was the 1970 National AAU Heavyweight Champion, the 1970 North American Amateur Heavyweight Champion, and the 1970 International Boxing League Heavyweight Champion. Lyle also fought on the United States Boxing Team. He lost to Russian Ivan Alexi, but knocked out Russian heavyweight Kamo Saroyan on ABC television's Wide World of Sports program.
Lyle turned professional under Bill Daniels, with trainer Bobby Lewis. Lyle went on to post a 19-0 record with 17 knockouts, and became the 5th rated heavyweight contender. He scored impressive knockouts over highly regarded Vicente Rondon, Buster Mathis, and Larry Middleton. Lyle's undefeated streak ended when he lost an upset one-sided decision to Jerry Quarry. Lyle continued to fight for over a decade. He scored impressive victories over top-rated Jose Luis Garcia, Oscar Bonavena, and Earnie Shavers. However, he lost to Muhammad Ali, George Foreman, and Jimmy Young.
Following a 1st round knockout loss to undefeated Gerry Cooney, Lyle retired and was working as a security guard in Las Vegas. He became involved in another murder, when a man was shot and killed in his apartment. However, Lyle was found not guilty, and in his early 50s decided on a comeback. After scoring a number of quick knockouts over 2nd rate opponents, Lyle tried to get a rematch with Foreman. However, the match was never made, and Ron Lyle retired from boxing.
Lyle died November 26, 2011, in Denver, Colorado, of complications from a sudden stomach ailment.
Amateur record (incomplete)