WWE Hall of Famer and Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson's father Rocky Johnson passed away on Wednesday at the age of 75. His cause of death currently remains unknown. Born in Nova Scotia, Canada, Rocky Johnson (birth name Wayde Douglas Bowles) along with Tony Atlas was part of the first African-American tag team to win the World Tag Team Championship in the World Wrestling Entertainment (erstwhile World Wrestling Federation or WWF).
WWE looks back on the Hall of Fame career of the late, great Rocky Johnson. https://t.co/Gp9U2YG93c— WWE (@WWE) January 15, 2020
Rocky Johnson began his professional career in 1964 and soon found his way into the National Wrestling Alliance (NWA) in the 1970s. Known as a tag team specialist, Johnson joined WWF in 1982, before retiring in 1991. During his stay with the company, Rocky Johnson had memorable feuds with the likes of Greg 'The Hammer' Valentine, Don Muraco and Adrian Adonis. However, arguably he achieved some of the biggest wins of his career by teaming up with Tony Atlas in the form of 'The Soul Patrol'. The two men became the first African-American World Tag Team Champions in WWE history when they defeated The Wild Samoans on December 10, 1983.
After retiring as a wrestler, Rocky Johnson trained his son Dwayne Johnson. Johnson along with the legendary Pat Patterson were influential in Dwayne Johnson's early rise in WWF. While Dwayne Johnson has gone one to become a top draw in WWE and in Hollywood, Rocky Johnson remained associated with the wrestling business after his retirement. He was inducted to the WWE Hall of Fame in 2008 by Dwayne Johnson himself.
The National Wrestling Alliance is saddened to hear of the passing of Rocky Johnson.— NWA (@nwa) January 15, 2020
His legacy stretches across every promotion. He was a champion everywhere he went including holding the NWA Georgia Championship.
Our thoughts and prayers are with his entire family. pic.twitter.com/KTqHZns6Hb
I am so sorry to hear of the passing of the great Rocky Johnson. Always a gentleman, I always enjoyed talking with him. My deepest condolences to his family, friends, and the fans who loved him. A very sad day for wrestling.#RIPRockyJohnson pic.twitter.com/4agKbOzAry— Mick Foley (@RealMickFoley) January 15, 2020