USA ‘Miracle On Ice’ Olympic star Mark Pavelich found dead at mental health facility

Mark Pavelich, a member of the USA 1980 Olympic ice hockey “Miracle on Ice” team, was found dead Friday at Eagle’s Healing Nest treatment center, in Sauk Centre, Minnesota. The cause and nature of death have not yet been established.

“We are saddened to hear about the passing of 1980 Olympic gold medalist Mark Pavelich,” a statement released by US Hockey said.

The Minnesota Star Tribune reported that the Olympic hockey star was undergoing treatment at the home as part of a civil commitment for assaulting his neighbor in August 2019.

In December, District Judge Michael Cuzzo ruled that he was unfit to stand trial, as he was mentally ill and dangerous.

“Mark is the most kind and gentle person you’d ever know. This is a totally different guy,” Pavelich’s sister, Jean Gevik, told the Star Tribune in 2019.

Pavelich played hockey at the University of Minnesota-Duluth and assisted Mike Eruzione on the game winning goal against the mighty Soviet “Red Army” team in the 1980 Olympics. The team went on to defeat Finland for the gold medal.

Miracle on Ice


The “Miracle on Ice” was an ice hockey game during the 1980 Winter Olympics in Lake Placid, New York. It was played between the hosting United States and the Soviet Union on February 22, 1980, (wikipedia)

Mark Pavelich


Mark Thomas Pavelich was an American professional ice hockey forward who played 355 regular season games in the National Hockey League for the New York Rangers, (wikipedia)

Mike Eruzione


Michael Anthony “Rizz, Rizzo” Eruzione is an American former ice hockey player. He is best known as the captain of the 1980 Winter Olympics United States national team (wikipedia)

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