Tags: verne gagne | dies | wrestler | promoter

Verne Gagne Dies: Legendary Wrestler, Promoter Was 89

By    |   Tuesday, 28 Apr 2015 12:41 PM

Verne Gagne, the legendary wrestler and WWE Hall of Famer whose career spanned more than 35 years, died Monday after suffering from Alzheimer's disease since 2009. He was 89.

Gagne was a two-time NCAA wrestling champion at the University of Minnesota and an alternate for the U.S. Olympic wrestling team in 1948 before transitioning to professional wrestling, the Star Tribune reported.

"He was a pioneer in modern day era wrestling," Gene Okerlund, a friend of Gagne and announcer for Gagne's All Star Wrestling show, told the newspaper. "He was the one of the first guys who became a television star. He was one of the first good-looking young guys. And I mean he was a real baby face. The gals loved him, the guys respected him because he was also one of the tough-nosed guys."

Gagne was a 10-time world heavyweight champion in the American Wrestling Association and earned inductions into both the WWE and WCW Halls of Fame in addition to the Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame.

The WWE recognized Gagne with a Twitter post Tuesday.



WWE wrote that Gagne was also well known as a promoter, helping stars like Hulk Hogan and the Iron Sheik rise to stardom.

"In the 1960s and 1970s, Verne became both a wrestler and a promoter, eventually becoming the sole owner of the AWA," Gagne's WWE biography reads. "A key contributor to the business during its expansion boom in the 1980s, Gagne is also partially responsible for the phenomenon of Hulkamania."

"After Hulk Hogan failed to capture the AWA Championship on several occasions, Gagne let him leave the AWA in late 1983. Hogan immediately made his way to WWE, defeated fellow WWE Hall of Famer The Iron Sheik for the WWE Championship in January 1984, and the rest is history," WWE continued.

Many in the wrestling world saluted Gagne on Twitter.





Related Stories:

© 2017 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

   
1Like our page
2Share
TheWire
Verne Gagne, the legendary wrestler and WWE Hall of Famer whose career spanned more than 35 years, died Monday after suffering from Alzheimer's disease since 2009. He was 89.
verne gagne, dies, wrestler, promoter
409
2015-41-28
Tuesday, 28 Apr 2015 12:41 PM
Newsmax Inc.
 

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved