A lot of us fans today are thinking about Paul Bearer’s death, and if you were watching at all on social media, you could easily see how well liked that guy was in wrestling.
Bearer (who many 1980s fans will also remember as manager Percy Pringle in World Class Championship Wrestling) came into prominence in 1990 in the WWF, so it’s a bit out of the scope of my blog, but I nonetheless want to pass on a pair of memories that I read and heard, respectively, about Bearer:
First, Dan Mirade (an exec with the Boston-area-based Millenium Wrestling Federation) wrote a lengthy, very personal blog post about his friendship with Bearer. Bearer had done some indy shots with the MWF and also was a mentor to Mirade. The two met in the locker room of the old Boston Garden in 1994.
I remember driving home from an event we had in Braintree, MA, the night before the anniversary of Tony Rumble’s death, then telling him Eddie Guerrero passed the next morning. . . Same thing when Randy Savage died last May when he was flying north.”
He added that Bearer always treated him with friendliness and respect, which is almost exactly the same thing my long-time friend, Ed, mentioned to me.
Ed’s a hard-core fan who hails from the Boston area these days. But in 1984, he lived in Alabama in a house that was owned by Bearer’s parents, who themselves lived just across the street. Ed’s story about Bearer that he told me by email is so great:
When [Bearer] came to town, knowing I was a huge fan, my parents said I should go say hello. He could not have been nicer. He was working in the Southeast at that point, but he gave me his business card, Percival Pringle III, with the NWA logo on it.”
Bearer was a memorable manager for the Undertaker in the WWE who also was a good ambassador for wrestling outside the ring, and it’s sad to know he’s gone.