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Randy 'Macho Man' Savage dies at 58

Randy

Randy "Macho Man" Savage, whose legal name was Randy Mario Poffo, died following a car crash in Florida on Friday, May 20, 2011. The medical examiner later determined Savage died of heart disease. Photo Credit: AP

Wrestling legend “Macho Man” Randy Savage died earlier today after a car accident in Seminole, Flordia, according to multiple published reports. He was 58.

The police report says Savage "may have suffered a medical event; however, this cannot be confirmed until an autopsy is performed." Savage’s brother, Lanny Poffo, told TMZ that the former champion suffered a heart attack and lost control of his vehicle. Savage was taken to the Largo Medical Center where he died.

The accident is still under investigation. Savage's 2009 Jeep Wrangler "collided head-on with a tree after it traveled over a raised concrete median divider," according to the police report. Savage’s wife, Barbara Poffo, 56, was also in the car and was taken to a local hospital for minor injuries. She is expected to live. 

He will forever be remembered with his over the top personality, colorful ring attire and raspy voice that delivered some of the best promos in wrestling history. His intensity was so great that it always seemed he was going to pop a vein during an interview with “Mean Gene” Okerlund backstage. And before there was “If you smell what The Rock is cooking,” there was “Ohhhhhhh yeah.”

The WWE currently has Savage's death as the lead item of their homepage. You can take a look at classic photos and video by clicking here. The wrestling community is quickly reacting to Savage's death on Twitter. Click here to see what The Rock, Hulk Hogan and others had to say on the passing of the Macho Man. 

The WWE issued this statement on their website:

WWE is saddened to learn of the passing of one of the greatest Superstars of his time, Randy Poffo, a.k.a. Randy “Macho Man” Savage. Poffo was under contract with WWE from 1985 to 1993 and held both the WWE and Intercontinental Championships. Our sincerest condolences go out to his family and friends. We wish a speedy recovery to his wife Lynn. Poffo will be greatly missed by WWE and his fans.

Savage began wrestling professionally in 1973. His rise to stardom began when he signed with Vince McMahon and the WWE in 1985. He would go on to become one of the most charismatic and popular stars during that time. He was a two-time WWE Champion and held the Intercontinental Championship. Arguably his most memorable rivalry was with Hulk Hogan, who was the biggest star in the company at the time.

Their rivalry reached its apex in 1989 when the two faced each other at Wrestlemania V. Savage would lose his title to Hogan after a reign of more than a year. "Macho Man" would become a color commentator during his final years with the WWE. He signed with Ted Turner’s World Championship Wrestling in 1994 and would go on to win the WCW title four times.

The height of his run in WCW once again involved Hogan during the 1996 edition of “Bash at the Beach.” Hogan turned heel and ditched the red-and-yellow colors he wore for so long during his “Hulkamania” run and attacked Savaged. Hogan joined the The Outsiders, which were made up of Scott Hall and Kevin Nash, both formerly of the WWE. Savage would depart from WCW in 1999. He would reappear in 2004 for a brief run in Total Non Stop Action (TNA).

Savage, real name Randy Poffo, was one of many wrestling stars to step out of the ring and into pop culture. Slim Jim chose Savage as the spokesman for their beef snack. Savage would deliver his signature catch phrase at the end of each commercial: “Snap into a Slim Jim. Ooooooh yeah!”

Here's a little nugget you may not have known: "Macho Man" played four seasons of minor-league baseball with three organizations from 1971-74. In the Florida State League (Single-A) in 1974, Savage hit .232 in 521 at-bats. He had 19 doubles, nine home runs and 66 RBIs.

He also appeared in the 2002 blockbuster “Spider-Man” as what else? A wrestler by the name of Bonesaw McGraw. One of his not so memorable ventures away from the ring was the release of his rap album in 2003, “Be a Man.”

One of the hallmarks of his wrestling career, other than the wild cowboy hats, was his manager, Miss Elizabeth. Savage met Miss Elizabeth shortly before arriving in the WWE. She followed him to the company and became his manager. She was involved in many major storylines through his career.

They divorced in 1992. Miss Elizabeth, real name Elizabeth Hulette, died in 2003 because of acute toxicity at the age of 42. She was dating former pro wrestler Lex Luger at the time of her death. A search of their home revealed a number of prescription drugs and steroids. Luger was charged with drug possession and was fined and sentenced to probation for five years.

 

 

 

 

 

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