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Liston Claims Phone Threats

Feb. 17, 1963 - World heavyweight boxing champion Sonny Liston (pictured with Richard Chamberlain of “Dr. Kildare”) said today his life had been threatened by a telephone caller. Liston said the caller told Liston’s wife that he did not stand up while the National Anthem was played at a Miami Beach prizefight. The caller added, “If that happens again, I’ll go over there with a shotgun and shoot his brains out.” Liston said today, “As a matter of fact, I was standing up. I even recall that a guy comes along and asks for my autograph during the Anthem. He was wearing a hat. I told him, ‘Take off your hat.’” Liston, training for his April title fight with Floyd Patterson, said he reported the incident to the police.


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