BBC News examines the career of the man who was one of the UK's most popular sportsmen.
Bruno was a favourite among the British public
Bruno's parents came to England from the Caribbean and settled in south London, where he grew up with five brothers and sisters in a terraced house.
His childhood dream was to be world heavyweight champion and he won the ABA heavyweight championship at 18.
His stellar career included 40
wins from his 45 contests.
The high point came in 1995, when Bruno lifted the WBC crown by beating Oliver McCall on points at Wembley Stadium.
He savours that moment and bought the ring in which it was achieved - sometimes even sleeping in it.
Bruno's time at the very top was short-lived and was brought to an abrupt end by a rampant Mike Tyson a year later.
It then appeared his career had come to an end when doctors advised him that continuing could risk his sight.
But he ignored the medical opinion this year, when he said he was considering a comeback and set his sights on regaining the heavyweight championship.
He applied for the reinstatement of his British Boxing Board of Control licence and admitted he missed boxing "very, very much".
Bruno was also moderately successful outside the boxing ring.
He became well known for his pantomime performances and appeared in a series of HP sauce television ads.
He married Laura in Hornchurch, Essex in 1990 but their relationship became strained and they divorced in 2001, after 20 years together and three children.