By Paul Walsh Star Tribune

Mark Pavelich, who played a key role for the legendary ‘Miracle on Ice’ Olympic team, is dead at 63 years old after being found at a Minnesota residential treatment center.

Pavelich provided the game-winning assist in the upset of the USSR in the ‘Miracle on Ice’ game in 1980 (February 1980 exhibition between USA and USSR pictured)

Prior to his death, Pavelich was receiving mental health treatment at Eagle’s Healing Nest, where he was committed after assaulting a neighbor in August 2019.

The Star Tribune reports that Pavelich’s cause of death is not yet known, but that his body was taken to a medical examiner’s office.

He had not been seen since around 8pm on Wednesday night and was likely dead for several hours when police were called to the center at around 8:30am on Thursday morning. 

Jack O’Callahan, left, and Mark Pavelich of the 1980 U.S. ice hockey team talked during the “Relive the Miracle” reunion at Herb Brooks Arena in 2015 in Lake Placid.

Pavelich faced four felony counts after beating his neighbor with a metal pipe, which left James Miller with cracked ribs, a bruised kidney, and a fractured vertebrae, among other injuries.

A judge found Pavelich to be incompetent to stand trial in December 2019, however, and was committed to a treatment facility.

This summer, he was moved to the treatment center where ultimately died.

He was due in court on Tuesday in regards to his commitment to the treatment center.

‘Our firm is heartbroken that we have lost our friend and legend,’ said Carolyn Bruno, an attorney representing Pavelich in his commitment case.




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