Michael Mantenuto, an actor, and a hockey player who had a starring role in Disney’s 2004 film, “Miracle,” has died at the age of 35.
Michael died this Monday after he apparently killed himself and was found dead in his car by police in Des Moines, Washington. TMZ reported the actor died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
The film, “Miracle,” tells the story of the U.S. Men’s hockey team that won the gold medal at the 1980 Winter Olympics.
It was an important match between the Soviet Union’s hockey team that was highly publicized due to it being in the middle of the Cold War, a period where the United States and the former USSR were regularly competing with one another for world hegemony.
The American’s victory over the superior Soviet team was deemed to be a miracle, because of the US team’s underdog status.
After the US had beaten the Soviet Union, they went on to defeat Finland in the final round and won gold.
Mantenuto played Jack O’Callahan, a player for the US team who injured his knee, but returned to the rink to take on the USSR.
In the end, he made the crucial shot that led to the victory of the Americans.
Kurt Russell and Patricia Clarkson also played starring roles in the movie.
Michael’s career was limited apart from his role in “Miracle.” He appeared in the 2006 TV movie, “Dirtbag,” and 2008’s “Surfer, Dude.”
After his acting career didn’t go the way he planned, Mantenuto joined the military briefly.
After his death, Colonel Guillaume Beaurpere wrote as a tribute, “those of you that knew Mike would remember him for his passionate love for his family and his commitment to the health of the force.”