Local Pro Wrestling Hall of Fame reacts to Bruno Sammartino's death

Desiree Steele
April 19, 2018

WWE Hall of Fame wrestler Bruno Sammartino died Wednesday with his wife, Carol, and sons, Darryl and Dan by his side, KDKA-TV reports.

His entire life was the stuff of legend.

The charismatic Sammartino, an Italian immigrant who settled in Pittsburgh, certainly drew well in Italian-American communities on the east coast.

Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto said Sammartino was one of the city's greatest ambassadors.

Sammartino was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame as a member of the 2013 class after turning down previous offers to do so, according to ESPN.

Sammartino's name on the marquee about guaranteed a squared circle sellout in the 1960s and 1970s and he held the World Wide Wrestling Federation championship for more than 11 years (4,040 days) over two title runs. He began his wrestling career in Pittsburgh in 1959.

The grappler did battle in the ring against the likes of Gorilla Monsoon, George The Animal Steel and Killer Kowalski.

The typical formula of these programs was to have a three-match series.

When he first got to the country he was unable to speak any English. Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below!

Sammartino finally accepted an invitation for induction into the WWE Hall of Fame, which he entered on the eve of WrestleMania 29.

Bruno also showed leadership skills and an unwavering dedication to the business in a famous incident with Stan Hansen in 1976.

As recalled by the Sporting News, Bruno Sammartino left the then-WWF on a sour note, as he was upset with the new focus on "sports entertainment", the drug use that was then rampant in the company, and the increasing prevalence of edgy, controversial storylines.

Following his retirement from the sport in 1981, Sammartino would later serve as a commentator. For Sammartino, and his many fans, it came down to authenticity.

He continues: "I also think they should definitely rebuild the iconic image of Jason into something that nobody has ever seen because it's ready for that consistency, similar to the Harry Potter series".

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