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'Miracle on Ice' star Mark Pavelich found dead at treatment facility

The 63-year-old had been ordered to undergo psychiatric care.

Mark Pavelich, the Eveleth native who was a member of USA's "Miracle on Ice" Olympic team, has been found dead at the age of 63.

The Stearns County Sheriff's Office confirmed reports that Pavelich was found dead at the Eagles Healing Nest in Sauk Centre on Thursday, with police called to a report of a death at the facility at 8:35 a.m.

Pavelich had been civilly committed to receive psychiatric care after a judge ruled he was unfit to stand trial for the alleged assault of his neighbor with a metal rod in Lutsen in August 2019.

The judge said that Pavelich "lacks the ability to rationally consult with counsel, is incapable of understanding the proceedings, and is incapable of participating in the defense due to mental illness or deficiency."

Pavelich was a hockey standout at Eveleth High School before becoming an All-American forward with the Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs. After his success in the Olympics he went on to score 137 goals during an NHL career with the New York Rangers, Minnesota North Stars and San Jose Sharks. 

His sister had previously said the family was convinced Pavelich suffered from chronic traumatic encephalopathy, more commonly known as CTE, the neurodegenerative brain disease caused by repeated head injuries.

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