Mario Oscar Melo
Mario Oscar Melo/Facebook
November 06, 2018 07:12 PM

A former professional boxer tragically died during a croissant-eating contest on Sunday.

Mario Oscar Melo was reportedly on his third croissant when he began choking in front of a bewildered crowd of people in Argentina.

In a video obtained by a local Argentinian website,, several men can be seen trying to force the croissant out of Melo’s throat by performing a series of abdominal thrusts before paramedics arrived.

Among those trying to help Melo were a doctor and a firefighter, who happened to be watching the contest, according to Marca.

Melo was then rushed to Pinamar Hospital where he was pronounced dead. He was 65.

Melo’s sister Aida reportedly told a local news station that her brother made several attempts to get the host’s attention before collapsing on the stage after choking on a medialuna, which is an Argentinian croissant, according to the Associated Press.

Mario Oscar Melo
Mario Oscar Melo/Facebook

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His sister claims people thought Melo was playing a practical joke rather than fighting for his life.

Though it is believed Melo died as a result of choking, authorities are trying to determine whether or not his diabetes played a part in his death, reported.

Melo made his boxing debut in 1984 in a match against Carlos Alberto Galli, according to

He is most famous for his fight against Michael Moorer in 1990, in which he was knocked out in round one. He acquired both the title as the light heavyweight and heavyweight champion of South America throughout his career and was known as “Mazazo.” Melo retired with a 21-9 record.

At the time of his death, Melo was living in Buenos Aires.

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