Share this article

41 Years After His Mother’s Death, Mike Tyson Reveals Real Reason He Exhumed Her Dead Body Out of the Coffin

Published 06/14/2023, 3:55 PM EDT

Follow Us

USA Today via Reuters

The person Mike Tyson understood as his father, James Kirkpatrick, left the family when the future world champion was barely born. Thus Lorna Smith Tyson, his mother, and the young children had to cope unaided with life’s adversities. Tyson was sixteen when his mother, who had cancer, passed away in 1982. Forty-one years have passed since his mother’s demise. Sitting alongside Stephen A Smith and Sebastian Joseph Day, the youngest Heavyweight champion, who turns fifty-seven this month-end, shared what little he could do for the departed soul.

America’s Favorite Video Today

It’s been eighteen years since Mike Tyson retired from boxing. Sitting with ESPN’s Stephen A Smith and Sebastian Joseph Day during Hotboxin’s latest episode, the trio’s discussion focused on family and family values. Smith shared how his father kept him and his siblings under strict discipline. Later he shared how, upon finding professional and financial success, he could help his mother fulfill some of her dreams.

Meanwhile, midway through the conversation, Tyson revealed an interesting detail about his mother.


Article continues below this ad

Mike Tyson talks about his mother

By the time, Tyson signed up for the most significant contract of his career, sadly, his mother, Janet Smith, was not there. The heartwarming story touched Joseph Day and Tyson. The former called it amazing. Mike Tyson then added that he got his late mother’s body exhumed. Surprised, Smith asked, “Really? You did that?” The former champion replied, “She died in a shitty coffin.

Deferentially, Stephen A Smith said he would have done the same thing. It would be interesting to note that in an interview with Shannon Sharpe on Club Shay Shay Podcast last year, Tyson mentioned that had his mother been alive; he probably wouldn’t have got himself involved with boxing.


Get instantly notified of the hottest Boxing stories via Google! Click on Follow Us and Tap the Blue Star.

Follow Us

He said, “You know, one of the best things that ever happened to me is that my mother died…because my mother would have made me babied me, there’s no way I would ever [get] into a street fight, no way I would ever learn to stand up for myself.


Article continues below this ad

However, per an article on ‘,’ Tyson has often expressed regret that his mother did not live to see him at his finest in his professional career. After James Kirkpatrick left, financial constraints forced Lorna Tyson to move to Brownsville, a rough neighborhood. “Iron’ Mike was roughly ten at the time. Fighting back seemed the only way to survive in a place with a high crime rate.

In and out of prisons, finally, reprieve came when Cus D’Amato, recognizing his talent, took him under his wings and eventually adopted him. In 1985, Mike Tyson professionally debuted. The world had yet to come across a more mean fighter.


Article continues below this ad

What do you think about Tyson’s relationship with his mother? Do share your thoughts and views with us in the comments below.

Watch This Story: Mike Tyson and Stephen A. Smith make ruthless admission while recalling former NBA MVP’s arch nemesis

Providing feedback will help us make your experience better.

The Fan's Perspective

Enjoyed Your Read? Let us know how likely you are to recommend EssentiallySports to your friends!

Least Likely

Most Likely



Written by:

Jaideep R Unnithan


One take at a time

Jaideep Unnithan is a Boxing writer at EssentiallySports. With over 400 articles authored at ES, Jaideep has built a reputation for diving deep into stories and producing detailed reports. Jaideep's passion for the sport of boxing was ignited when his father shared his experience of watching Ali vs Frazier live in the US.
Show More>

Edited by:

Arijit Saha