One of the most significant professional wrestlers of his generation, “Superstar” Billy Graham, died at the age of 79.
Graham, a former heavyweight champion and Hall of Fame wrestler, was renowned for his extraordinary physique and his flamboyant, charismatic style, which had a big influence on subsequent wrestlers.
The company released a statement saying, “WWE is saddened to learn that WWE Hall of Famer ‘Superstar’ Billy Graham has passed away. With his eccentric sense of style, outrageous interviews, and bodybuilder physique, Graham—a former WWE Champion—set the bar for a subsequent generation of Superstars.
I’m feeling really depressed.
He changed my entire life, as well as the lives of many others, including Flair, Hogan, Jesse, and countless others. I just want to wish you the best, Valerie. You are a saint, and more people know it than you realize. Xr48yzf20G — Dave Meltzer (@davemeltzerWON), May 18, 2023.
The Superstar Billy Graham Just Left Us 🙏🏻 THANK YOU FOR ALL YOUR INFLUENCE On My Career! pic.twitter.com/YH0eT2NM4p
— Ric Flair® (@RicFlairNatrBoy) May 18, 2023
Graham’s family claims that he battled an infection in his ears, head, and sinus cavities for more than four months while receiving treatment in the hospital. On Monday, his wife resisted allowing the doctors to remove his life support.
He is a fighter, and despite having a weak body, he has a strong will. God is our hope, Valerie Graham, Graham’s wife, wrote. Graham died on May 17, two days later.
Graham, whose real name is Eldridge Wayne Coleman, was created on June 7, 1943, in Phoenix, Arizona. He started out as a professional bodybuilder and quickly grew to be close friends with and Arnold Schwarzenegger’s training partner.
He assumed the flashy and alluring “Superstar” Billy Graham persona, which helped him become well-known as a professional wrestler. He was distinctive due to his sculpted bodybuilder physique, expensive attire, and handlebar mustache.
In the late 1970s, Graham achieved stardom in the WWWF (now the WWE). By defeating Bruno Sammartino, he captured the federation’s heavyweight title in 1977, which he held for nine months.
Graham became a fan favorite because of his reputation for giving entertaining interviews filled with bombastic trash talk and catchphrases. Graham’s charismatic personality, however, had the most enduring effect.
He pioneered much of the flamboyance and unique flair now common among professional wrestlers. For instance, he is renowned for coining the term “brother” in his promos, which many wrestlers have since adopted, most notably Hulk Hogan.
If Billy Graham hadn’t been born, this business would look very different today, claims Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter. According to the author, “He became the prototype for the charismatic superstar.”.
Graham has had an impact on a number of well-known wrestlers, including Ric Flair, Hulk Hogan, Steve Austin, and Jesse Ventura.
Graham’s health suffered as a result of professional wrestling; he required hip surgery and retired in 1987. After being enshrined in the WWE Hall of Fame in 2004, he returned to the company in 2015 under a Legends Contract.
Throughout his career, Graham cautioned other wrestlers about the dangers of steroid use and had numerous disagreements with Vince McMahon, the executive chairman of the WWE.
Following Graham’s passing, numerous professional wrestlers sent their condolences and remembered him as a legend and an example for those who came after him.
Vic Flair remarked, “THANK YOU FOR ALL YOUR INFLUENCE ON MY CAREER.
I’m in a bad mood. He had a significant impact on the lives of many individuals, including Flair, Hogan, Jesse, and a large number of people you probably wouldn’t recognize. I just want to send you my best wishes, Valerie. You are a saint, and more people than you can imagine are aware of it. ”.
WWE is saddened to learn of the passing of “Superstar” Billy Graham, a member of the WWE Hall of Fame. WWE (@WWE) May 18, 2023 We offer our condolences to Graham’s family, friends, and supporters.
May you rest in peace, Billy Graham, a legendary Superstar who had a profound influence on all wrestlers who came after him.
Please tell others about this story in remembrance of this great wrestler.