Monday, November 5, 2007

The Fabulous Moolah wins her final title

Dim the lights around the ring, and raise a glass to the Fabulous Moolah who passed away November 2nd. She was just 84 years old.

World Wrestling Entertainment issued the following statement:

"WWE is saddened by the passing of Lillian Ellison, who was known to sports-entertainment fans as Hall of Famer Fabulous Moolah. She passed away in Columbia, S.C.
In the world of women’s wrestling, there will always be one irrefutable legend that stands head and shoulders above the rest: The Fabulous Moolah. She was the longest reigning champion in the history of her chosen sport, or any sport for that matter. And with more than 50 years in the business to her credit, she established a legacy that will never be forgotten, making her name synonymous with female wrestling."

She wasn't just a wrestler, she WAS women's wrestling. Mary Lillian Ellison was born July 22, 1923, and grew up in South Carolina, the youngest of 13 siblings and the sole girl.
She was 8 when her mother died of cancer and was deeply distraught, so to cheer her up, her father would take her to the local Tuesday night wrestling matches. Ellison immediately began idolizing the dominant woman wrestler of the era, Mildred Burke, who had given the female division added attention and popularity.
At just age 14, Ellison married 21-year old Walter Carroll, the marriage lasted just two years, and Ellison gave birth to a daughter, who she named Mary. Ellison then ignored her dad’s pleas to stay home with the baby and set out for a wrestling career of her own.

Moolah was a young woman in a grimy world. When managers encourged lady wrestlers to sleep with promoters to get bookings, Moolah said hell no. She became a star, winning her first champion title in 1956. She held the belt almost exclusively until 1984. Then Moolah regained the title another three times. Her final reign was in 1999. She was 76 years old.
She was key to the popularity of womens wrestling. Many remember the "feud" between Lou Albano and Cyndi Lauper that ended with Moolah battling Lauper's young protégé, the beautiful Wendi Richter.

Besides running her wrestling business she managed and mentored many female and male wrestlers. She was the focus of the documetary, Lipstick & Dynamite - The First Ladies of Wrestling. She was an animated character on CBS Saturday morning's Hulk Hogan's Rock 'n' Wrestling and an action figure of Fabulous Moolah was released in 2006 by Jakks Pacific as part of their Classic Superstars series.

What a gal!

reporting from Hollywood,
Barbie Doll

Sourced from Wikipedia... read about Fabulous Moolah on Wikipedia

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