Published: Thu, April 19, 2018
Entertaiment | By Lawrence Myers

Vince McMahon comments on the passing of Bruno Sammartino

Vince McMahon comments on the passing of Bruno Sammartino

Wrestling icon Bruno Sammartino has died at the age of 82, World Wrestling Entertainment announced on Wednesday. He helped turn professional wrestling into the massive industry it is today, and many current wrestlers shared their memories of him and thanked him for his contributions to the sport after learning of his passing.

While Sammartino did spend some time disagreeing with the changes being made in the WWE, he did reconcile with the organization, and was finally inducted into their Hall of Fame in 2013. He was in his son David's corner for a bout at the first WrestleMania in 1985.

Bruno Sammartino lived an incredible life like none other and it was outstanding that at least WWE got to have him take part in some awesome programming to capture who he really was as a never-ending reminder of Bruno Sammartino, his legacy, and his outstanding personality before he passed. He sold out Madison Square Garden 187 times and captured the hearts of fans as one of the longest-reigning world champions for WWF, holding the belt for almost 8 consecutive years. He and his family moved the United States in 1950, settling in Pittsburgh where his father had lived for several years. Sammartino was respected and loved by his fans and others in the locker room.

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Sammartino played the hero with aplomb, battling against numerous greatest heels of his era, including Gorilla Monsoon and George "The Animal" Steele.

Sammartino lost the title to Ivan Koloff in 1971, but regained it in late 1973, by defeating Stan Hansen, and held the belt for close to four years before dropping the strap to Superstar Billy Graham in April 1977.

"My thoughts are with his entire family". I was a huge fan of this legend as a kid, Bruno was a massive influence and inspiration on my career from a far.

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"Bruno Sammartino was one of the greatest ambassadors the city of Pittsburgh ever had", he said.

"Devastating news for the wrestling world", tweeted "The Million Dollar Man" Ted DiBiase. "Some of the fondest memories of my childhood are of sitting in the basement with my grandfather on Saturday mornings and watching Bruno wrestle".

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