WWE News Bytes

WWE News Bytes

November 9, 2007

by Sassy


Before I post the official obituary for The Fabulous Moolah, I wanted to post a memorial of someone very near and dear to me.

The man who introduced me to the world of wrestling, my Dad, passed away November 6, 2007 after a hard fought battle with leukemia.  He was 77 years old. It was a peaceful quiet passing.  At his funeral they talked about him being in the Army, about his being a Mason, about the years he had worked to support his family, his volunteer work,  and none of that meant as much to me as the time he was able to spend with me. As I think about what I lost, I remember what I gained. I grew up watching local wrestling with my Dad on Saturdays.  Because of my Dad, I learned about wrestling watching Sonny Myers, Pat O’Connor, Bob Geigel, Bulldog Bob Brown, and the list goes on and on. Dad took me to my first live match and I saw Geigel, Brown and the amazing Handsome Harley Race – although I wasn’t allowed to get too close to him – he was a bad guy after all. Before Dad became so ill, we talked about how wrestling had changed since that time. He wasn’t for the glitz and glamour that wrestling has become. Every time I see a match, I will think of my Dad and remember the positive things in my life and one of the gifts that he gave me – the love of the squared circle. Rest in peace, Daddy, your daughter will always love you and miss you.

The Fabulous Moolah Obituary

Mary Lillian Ellison, 84, Fabulous Moolah, Is Dead


New York Times

Published: November 6, 2007

Mary Lillian Ellison, whose flying drop kicks, flying head scissors and hair-pulling “flying mare” body slams brought her renown as the professional wrestler the Fabulous Moolah, died Friday in Lexington, S.C., near her home in Columbia. She was 84.

She died at a hospital after shoulder replacement surgery and might have had a heart attack or a blood clot, said her daughter, Maryetta Austin.

For more than half a century, as a wrestler, promoter and trainer, the Fabulous Moolah was a leading figure on the women’s circuit. She held versions of the women’s wrestling championship for all but short intervals from the mid-1950s to the mid-1980s. World Wrestling Entertainment brought her back at age 76. Clad in a sequined jacket over a green leotard, she pinned her opponent, Ivory, in a match at Cleveland and was again proclaimed the champion.

The Fabulous Moolah enjoyed the mayhem, but she especially coveted the money.

When she started in pro wrestling in the early 1950s, the promoter Jack Pfeffer decided a name change was in order. As she told it in “The Fabulous Moolah: First Goddess of the Squared Circle” (Regan Books, 2002), written with Larry Platt, Pfeffer told her “the name Lillian Ellison wouldn’t do. Not flashy enough.”

He asked her why she was wrestling, and, as she recalled: “Annoyed, I blurted out: ‘For the money. I want to wrestle for the moolah.’”

First, she apprenticed as a valet for Nature Boy Buddy Rogers; she was billed as Slave Girl Moolah and clad in a leopard-skin outfit. Soon, she was wrestling as the Fabulous Moolah, and she won the championship belt in 1956. On July 1, 1972, when the New York State Athletic Commission lifted a ban on women’s wrestling, she was the featured attraction at Madison Square Garden.

Mary Lillian Ellison was born in the country town of Tookiedoo, S.C., near Columbia, the 13th child and only daughter in her family. When she was 10, her father took her to pro wrestling matches in Columbia and she was inspired to become a wrestler by watching Mildred Burke, the reigning women’s champion.

The Fabulous Moolah was only 5 feet 4 inches and 118 pounds when she began wrestling as a professional, and her physique did not seem particularly imposing. But her maneuvers wowed the crowds.

“Flying drop kick is when you jump flat-footed from the floor up as high as the person you’re looking at and kick them in the face or in the chest, wherever you want to kick them, and then you fall to the floor,” she told National Public Radio’s “Fresh Air” program in 2005.

“And then the flying head scissors is where you jump up, put both legs around their head and throw them forward as you come down. And a flying mare is when you get a girl by the hair of the head and pull her over your shoulder, then slam her to the mat as hard you can. And I love doing that.”

Her jet-black haired dyed strawberry blonde, Ellison remained active in World Wrestling Entertainment into her last years, writing commercials for it. She was profiled in the 2004 Ruth Leitman documentary “Lipstick & Dynamite,” a history of women’s pro wrestling.

In addition to her daughter, of Conway, S.C., she is survived by six grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. Her five marriages ended in divorce. She lived for many years with Katie Glass, a former midget wrestler known as Diamond Lil, who joined with her in training wrestlers.

The Fabulous Moolah said she never minded the booing inspired by her roughhouse antics.

“I loved when they got mad at me,” she told The State newspaper of Columbia in 2005. “They called me all kinds of names. I said: ‘Call me anything you want. You don’t write my check.’”


Chris Masters has been released from his WWE contract.  Source: www.pwbts.com. If you recall, Masters was one of the wrestlers recently suspended for failing a drug test.  Masters has said the failed drug test was not his fault. He claimed it was something left over in his system. Masters has been suspended before, this suspension was to have been for sixty days. His first suspension was from being on the now famous Signature Pharmacy client list.  Chris Masters is a WWE trademarked name, Chris will have to come up with something new if he intends to continue wrestling.

Harry (D.H.) Smith was also suspended for violating WWE’s Wellness Policy.  It is my understanding that he was taking a drug similar to the drug used by his father, deceased wrestler Davy Boy Smith.


Carlito seems to be having some problems at the office these days. It is being reported that he is not happy with the lack of push he has been receiving while sources report Carlito has not been putting one hundred percent into his matches. It is rumored that Carlito has requested a release from WWE at this time. This may mean Carlito will be returning to Puerto Rico where his father and brother work in the wrestling business.

Al Snow is now engaged to former WWE diva Bobcat. Snow is a trainer with Ohio Valley Wrestling in Louisville, KY. Source: www.gerweck.net.

WWE has decided against using "Dr. Death" Steve Williams as a coach. WWE was flying him in from Colorado to help train the developmental talent. Source: Gerweck.

JBL's wife Meredith Whitney caused some serious havoc on Wall Street this past weekend and was on the receiving end of several death threats which forced the former WWE champ to cancel his planned trip to Texas to stay home with his wife. Whitney - a financial analyst from CIBC World Market - recommended a 'sell' rating for Citigroup which basically transformed into investors getting rid of the stock resulting in a $15 billion loss in market cap for the company. The Dow Jones also dropped 360 points in related effect. A total of about $369 billion were wiped off the US stock market value by the end of the weekend thanks to Whitney's recommendation. "I'm

proud of Meredith for what she did," said JBL in an interview with the WWE website. "She stuck her neck out and told the truth. After all, she has to be honest with her investors, which a lot of analysts won't do for fear of upsetting the wrong people." JBL met with Whitney while he was doing some work for FOX News. Both of them now contribute to the FOX Business Channel. (thanks to Colin Vassallo)

From the New York Post:




November 3, 2007 -- There were profanity-laced angry calls, hate-spewing e-mails, even wishes for her death.

Yet financial analyst Meredith Whitney isn't wrestling with her conscience over the decision yesterday to downgrade Citigroup's stock that caused $369 billion in the U.S. stock market to vanish in one day.  MORE: Citi Chief On His Way Out

"It is a major call, and it takes guts," Whitney told The Post with her husband John "Bradshaw" Layfield, a 6-foot-6, 300-pound giant who wrestled as JBL for World Wrestling Entertainment and is a fellow investment guru, at the St. Regis Hotel.

"This was the intellectually honest thing to do. I think shareholders should get out of the stock," she said. "People have always been afraid to come out with negative calls on Citi because it's a widely held company, and people are intimidated by it."

On Thursday, Meredith, an analyst at CIBC World Market, a subsidiary of the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, issued a stern report saying Citigroup needs to cut its dividend or sell assets to stave off a $30 billion capital shortfall. She further downgraded Citigroup shares to "market underperform," which basically tells investors to sell.

Almost immediately, Citigroup's shares plunged 7 percent, costing the company $15 billion. More significantly, the bank took the rest of the market with it. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 360 points, or 2.6 percent, socking it to investors big and small around the globe.

"To see wealth destruction is upsetting. Look, my mom owns the stock, my husband owns the stock," the Manhattan money maven said. "I certainly thought it was going to be a big deal. Did I think a $369 billion decline in the market? No."

Her phone rang off the hook yesterday. Friends and colleagues called with support. Other wished her to hell.

She described the typical rant as: "F - - - you, dumb analyst. I hope you get hit by a truck," but added, "The abusive phone calls, thankfully, have gone straight to voice mail."

Whitney, 37, shrugged off all the hate.

"When a lot of money is at stake, it's the average investor who reacts most emotionally. I suspect that's the case here. I'm more than capable of defending myself. If I were a shrinking violet, I wouldn't have made the call."

Still, her husband, who won the WWE championship in 2004, was unnerved enough to cancel a trip to his native Texas.

"I just don't want her to be alone this weekend. She tried to talk me into going, but if someone accosted her on the sidewalk or something, I don't know what I would do," Layfield said.

(thanks to Mike Informer) Source: www.gerweck.net.


While rumors still swirl regarding Jericho’s return to the WWE ring, another piece of information popped up regarding a verbal altercation Chris had with a radio host on the “Opie and Anthony” radio show.  A disparaging remark was made about Christopher Reeve.  Jericho promptly said the joke was inappropriate and that Reeve was a friend. Jim Norton, the joke teller, refused to let it go. Opie later explained the reason Jericho took offense to the remark about quadriplegic Christopher Reeve was that Jericho’s mother was a quadriplegic. Source: www.rajah.com.

Blackjack Mulligan, WWE Hall of Fame member, recently suffered a stroke.

Big Van Vader, former WWE star, underwent hip replacement surgery.

Brock Lesnar will be facing former UFC Heavyweight Champion Frank Mir at UFC 81 in Las Vegas on February 2, 2008. This will be Lesnar’s second pro fight. Source: Rajah.

Nicholas Bollea, son of former wrestler Hulk Hogan and member of the cast of Hogan Knows Best,  has been arrested in Florida on charges stemming from the accident which has left John Graziano disabled.  The charges include Reckless Driving Involving Serious Bodily Injury, Use of a motor vehicle in commission of a felony, A person under the age of 21 operating a vehicle with a breath-alcohol level of .02 or higher, and illegal window tint. True to form, the Hogan family claims that since Graziano was not wearing his seat belt “it isn’t Nick’s fault”. The driver of the Dodge Viper Nick was racing has also been cited for reckless driving. While I agree that Graziano should have been wearing his seat belt, the lack thereof would not have been a problem if little Nicky hadn’t wrecked the car in which Graziano was a passenger.

Brooke Adams, ECW Extreme Expose member, was allegedly terminated after an altercation backstage with Melina regarding fur boots Adams was wearing for the Diva Battle Royal Match.  Melina often uses fur boots in her ring appearances.  How petty can these people get? We also hear that Adams was a true “diva” and got considerable backstage heat before the boot incident. 

Teddy Hart is now back in Canada after leaving Florida and being released from his WWE developmental contract. Hart recently got a huge pop during his return to Jersey All Pro Wrestling at their tenth anniversary event in Rahway, NJ two weeks ago. Source: www.prowrestlingfans.com.

Former multiple-time World Champion to undergo triple heart bypass surgery

Posted on 11/08/107 by Mike Informer (Courtesy: Georgianne Makropoulos)

Nick Bockwinkle will under go triple bypass heart surgery Friday morning at 6:00 am. Nick went in for a heart catherization today, and the doctors discovered he needed a triple bypass.

Nick is resting comfortably at the hospital.

Please keep Nick in your thoughts and prayers.

Source: www.pwbts.com.

Benoit's doctor has connection to another dead wrestler


The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Published on: 11/05/07

The Carrollton doctor who prescribed steroids to Chris Benoit before the wrestler's double murder-suicide in June also prescribed a steady dose of potentially addictive pain killers and muscle relaxers to a local professional wrestler who died last year.

Dr. Phil Astin III, who has been indicted on federal charges of overprescribing to two patients, wrote wrestler Michael Durham four prescriptions for painkillers within a 25-day span of March 2005, pharmacy records provided by his widow reveal. The prescriptions included two for 60 350-milligram Soma pills, a powerful muscle relaxer, over a four-day period from March 3-7.


• More Fayette news

Overall, Astin's signature was on 32 of the final 36 prescriptions Durham received over the last year of his life, including the final one given to him the day prior to his death on Feb. 16, 2006 at age 40, the pharmacy records show. All 120 of those 350-milligram Soma pills were missing the next day when authorities discovered Durham's body, Tyrone police officials have said.

Astin, who declined comment when reached at home Monday afternoon, was among 11 doctors to dispense medication to Durham over a span of seven years dating to 1999, records show.

Durham, a Peachtree City resident who performed under the stage name of "Johnny Grunge," died a day after filling the last of the prescriptions he received from Astin. His autopsy report attributed the official causes of death to blockage of vessels supplying blood to the heart, but cited toxic levels of Soma, and the painkiller hydrocodone as contributing factors.

Authorities began investigating Astin after Benoit's murder of his family and subsequent suicide in late June. Testosterone was discovered at the Benoit's Fayettville home. Astin told The Associated Press he'd been supplying Benoit with the steroids and was soon indicted by federal authorities on seven counts of overprescribing to two people, although Benoit was not one of them.

The revelations about Durham led a medical specialist to call Astin's actions into question.

"You've got a lot of meds in a short period of time," said Dr. Barry Straus of the North Georgia Pain Clinic and a case reviewer for the state medical board. "The doses aren't necessarily odd — it's just the jump-start. If he had worked up to those levels, it's no big deal."

Astin's attorney, Virginia Natasha Perdew-Silas, has declined comment on the case since being appointed as his public defender in October.

However Astin's former counsel, Manny Arora, had warned earlier against any rush to judgment without knowledge of all the facts and pertinent medical data.

"The prescriptions were completely normal if you talk to any doctor specializing in hormone issues," he said, though he said he knew little about Durham.

A sequence that caught Straus' eye occurred in November 2006, when Durham was given a prescription from Astin for 100 painkillers on Nov. 21 and for another 100 again just six days later.

Durham's widow, Penny Bordeau, called Astin "a suburban drug dealer" in a recent TV interview.



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