COON RAPIDS, Minn. - Scott LeDoux, a former heavyweight contender who took on Larry Holmes, George Foreman, and Ken Norton and twice fought for the title, has died. He was 62.
He died Thursday at his home in the Minneapolis suburb of Coon Rapids after a nearly three-year battle with Lou Gehrig’s disease, longtime friend and attorney Bob Dolan said yesterday.
Nicknamed “The Fighting Frenchman,’’ Mr. LeDoux was the son of a miner in the northern Minnesota town of Crosby who went on to fight professionally from 1974 to 1983. He had a record of 33-13-4, with 22 knockouts.
He earned a draw with Norton and Leon Spinks and lost a title fight to Holmes by technical knockout in 1980 at the Met Center, the arena that was once home to the Minnesota North Stars. He fought Muhammad Ali in a five-round exhibition.
Mr. LeDoux developed a reputation as a fun-loving fighter, who once accidentally knocked off Howard Cosell’s toupee while the sportscaster was doing a ringside interview with Johnny Boudreaux after a bout Mr. LeDoux believed he should have won.
He entered the political arena after leaving boxing. He was an Anoka County commissioner until resigning a year ago because of declining health. His wife was elected to fill his seat.
“He was a big man with a gentle spirit,’’ said Anoka County board of commissioners chairwoman Rhonda Sivarajah. “I can only imagine the sadness at losing someone so special after such a valiant battle.’’
Mr. LeDoux was a two-time Upper Midwest Golden Gloves champion and played college football at Minnesota Duluth.