(TotalConservative.com) – Before there was Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair, Jesse Ventura or Triple H there was “Superstar” Billy Graham. The wrestling Hall of Famer passed away last week at the age of 79. The “Superstar” stood 6’4” and weighed 275 pounds in his 1970’s prime. He popularized the long blonde hair, sculpted bodybuilder physique and ability to work a microphone in a villainous way like no-one before him. Wrestling historians often remark that there had never been a performer like Graham with his unique combination of physical skill and all-around charisma. Multiple-time WWE champion and current partial owner Triple H calls Graham “the most copied” performer in the wrestling business. Arguably the biggest star in professional wresting history Hulk Hogan is widely known to have ‘copied’ Graham’s style. Billy Graham himself in past interviews said Hogan took his look, phrases and mannerisms with his blessing, calling it “the ultimate compliment.”
Wrestling icon Ric Flair posted on his Twitter that Graham had passed and thanked him for all the influence his own Hall of Fame career. Graham who would have turned 80 years old this June 7th was put on life support after being hospitalized for four months prior to his death. Graham was born Eldridge Wayne Coleman Jr. in Paradise Valley, Arizona, he played Canadian Football and practiced bodybuilding with good friend Arnold Schwarzenegger. He made his pro-wrestling debut in 1975 and became a world champion three times in various wrestling associations. He had to retire for the sport in 1987 due to injury and became a match color commenter. Graham was an outspoken critic of steroids which he had used throughout his life and blamed for the degenerative injuries which ended his performing career. Graham had feuded with WWE owner Vince McMahon for some years but they reconciled, allowing him to make sporadic appearances with the company and be inducted into their Hall of Fame in 2009.
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