Since this is Father’s Day, I wanted to do a column on the legendary fathers of professional wrestling. Let’s face it, without them, we wouldn’t have some of the wrestling stars we do today. It seems that wrestling, in many ways, becomes a family business, and it runs in the blood of everyone within that family. We as fans, owe each of these families thanks for bringing us all what we enjoy to this day.
One cannot talk about family and wrestling in the same breath without speaking of the late and great legendary Stu Hart. Stu Hart was the man responsible for briniging to the world, his sons Bret and Owen Hart. Owen of course suffered a very sudden and tragic end, and was never able to truly fulfill his potential. Bret, however, went on to become one the world’s most recognizable stars and a multi-time World Champion.
Stu however didn’t stop there. He was the man that also created the legendary Dungeon. This place (the basement of the Hart house) became the training grounds for some of wrestling’s top stars. Including his sons Bret and Owen, the dungeon also served as the training grounds for guys like Edge, Chris Jericho, Christian Cage, Brian Pillman, and Lance Storm. If a wrestler was able to survive the dungeon, they earned the respect of the late Stu Hart.
Stu was a father to twelve children, and what he brought to them goes hand-in-hand with what he brought to the world of professional wrestling. Many consider him a pioneer for his training methods and the dungeon has gone down in history as a place very few have been lucky enough to train.
There is of course another family (or should I say Familia) that has been greatly involved in the wrestling business, and that is of course the Guerrero family. Here, it all started with the man known as Gory Guerrero. The man, kind enough to bring to the world the late Eddie Guerrero.
Gory was an innovator himself, as he was one of the first wrestlers to really stand out with the lucha libre style of wretling. It was with these skills that he passed his knowledge down to Eddie, Hector, and of course Chavo Guerrero Sr. Keep in mind this was also the man credited in inventing such moves as the “Gory Bomb” and even the Camel Clutch! Without Gory, there would be no Chavo Guerrero today; there would be no Hector managing LAX in TNA; and there would never have been an Eddie Guerrero to lie, cheat, and steal his way into the hearts of millions!
You may have also heard of the name Rocky Johnson. This of course is the man that brought us his son Dwayne; or known to the MILLIONS…and millions around the world as simply, The Rock! There is no doubt we all know who the Rock is, and what he has done for the business; so without his father, there would be no “people’s champion.” Also, let’s not forget the late “High-Chief” Peter Maivia who is the Rocks’ grandfather. Man, the wrestling blood in that family is incredible!
Then, there are the stars of today who owe nothing but great thanks to their fathers for getting them there. “Cowboy” Bob Orton gave the world the “Legend Killer” Randy Orton. Jim “The Anvil” Neidhart has his legacy continue with his daughter Nattie Neidhart (who is the next Woman’s Champion in my opinion). And of course, the newest member, Ted Dibiase Jr., son of the “Million Dollar Man” himself.
It’s true that all of these kids owe great thanks to their families and fathers’ for making the sacrifices they did. Without their begginings, there would be no second- or third-generation stars to continue the history. So, as you go about your day, remember to thank your father for all he has done. Without him, there would be no you!
I’ll be back tomorrow with my next issue of Lost In The Shadows!