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Ex-Ironwood star Jim LaBlonde dies at age 40

GREEN BAY, Wis. — Former Ironwood star athlete Jim LaBlonde passed away unexpectedly from an aneurysm at his home with his family in Green Bay, Wisconsin, on March 31. He was 40 years old.

LaBlonde is one of Luther L. Wright High School’s all-time greats, recently being inducted into the school’s sports hall of fame and the Ironwood Sports Hall of Fame.

He was all-state in Class C track and an All-Upper Peninsula football player. He still holds the school record set in his senior year of 1997 in the 100- and 200-meter dashes.

LaBlonde attended Wisconsin-LaCrosse, playing football for three years and running one year of track, and earned his bachelor’s degree in physical education in 2003.

At the time of his death, he was a middle school teacher and coach in the Howard-Suamico School District in Green Bay. With his wife Dana and three children surviving, his funeral was Saturday in De Pere, Wisconsin.