Geesh. Between the news that Luke Perry succumbed to his massive stroke yesterday and King Kong Bundy’s death late Monday, it’s already been a crummy week. Bundy was the first true monster heel that frightened me as an early Hulkamaniac.
When he squashed fools with his avalanche demanding a five count, I thought he was unstoppable. Especially after he broke Hogan’s ribs. The first Wrestlemania main event was more of a spectacle, but it was Bundy’s steel cage match with Hogan that really sold me on the idea that Wrestlemania was special. And that was in large part to Bundy’s intimidating presence. Bundy died at the age of 61.
He was a classic member of The Heenan Family and was involved in some major moments including teaming with Big John Studd when Paul Orndorff turned on Hogan. He tried to squash members of his own team in a Wrestlemania 3 match and was a quintessential heel in the Hulkamania era surviving the first Survivor Series with fellow monsters Andre the Giant and the One Man Gang.
Here’s some tributes from some of his peers.
Overwhelmed by King Kong Bundy’s passing, only great memories,R.I.P. big man until we meet again. HH
— Hulk Hogan (@HulkHogan) March 5, 2019
R.I.P. King Kong Bundy…another great wrestling talent gone too soon. He will be missed, but he's in good company now, like in this match… https://t.co/rhqsDS5qAD
— Jerry Lawler (@JerryLawler) March 5, 2019
OMG can’t hardly believe my friend Chris Pallies aka King Kong Bundy has passed away. Very sad news he was a kind soul. Rest In Peace Brother until we meet again.
— Brutus Beefcake (@brutusbeefcake_) March 5, 2019
Hate to hear about the passing of King Kong Bundy. He was so cool to me when I walked in that @WWE dressing room as an absolute nobody in 1986.
— Mick Foley (@RealMickFoley) March 5, 2019
— KEN SHAMROCK (@ShamrockKen) March 5, 2019
— Tommy Dreamer (@THETOMMYDREAMER) March 5, 2019
RIP King Kong Bundy. One of the best villains of 1980’s wrestling. A man who did his job with such incredible authenticity. A rare find. Thank you for your contributions sir. Godspeed. #five
— Frankie Kazarian (@FrankieKazarian) March 5, 2019
So sad to learn of King Kong Bundy passing away. A true legendary big man who paved the way for a lot of us. A true gentleman and so kind to be around. God bless you. pic.twitter.com/iDyZR865mD
— Abyss (@TherealAbyss) March 5, 2019
sucks to hear the passing of King Kong Bundy, only met you once and you actually said hello to me first by name, couldn’t believe you knew me.. you paved the way for big men today RIP #FIVE
— RIGGS (@realscottyriggs) March 5, 2019
I never met King Kong Bundy but if it wasn’t for King Kong Bundy, I might never have been a Hulkamaniac. RIP.
— Joey Ryan (@JoeyRyanOnline) March 5, 2019