Randy Savage, aka wrestler Macho Man, dies in car crash
Wrestling legend Randy Savage, also known as Macho Man, died in a car crash in Florida on Friday, May 20. He was 58.
Several of his former colleagues and on-screen rivals, including Hulk Hogan, expressed their condolences online. Savage's brother, former wrestler "Leaping" Lanny Poffo, also known as "The Genius," posted a memorial message and photo on his website.
On Friday morning, Savage, whose real name is Randy Poffo, lost control of the 2009 Jeep Wrangler he was driving, veered over the raised concrete median divider, crossed over the eastbound lanes and collided head-on with a tree, according to a Florida Highway Patrol crash report obtained by OnTheRedCarpet.com. His wife Barbara Lynn Poffo, 56, was a passenger and suffered minor injuries.
Police say Savage may have suffered a "medical event" before the accident. A police spokesperson said in a statement that an official cause of death will be issued by the county medical examiner following an autopsy.
"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," the the WWE company said in a statement posted on its website. "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."
Savage has no children. He married longtime girlfriend Lynn Payne in May 2010. He was previously married to his manager, Elizabeth Hulette, from 1984 to 1992. Hulette died in 2003 from an overdose of alcohol and prescription drugs.
"I'm completely devastated, after over 10 years of not talking with Randy, we've finally started to talk and communicate," fellow wrestling star Hulk Hogan said on his Twitter page. "He had so much life in his eyes & in his spirit, I just pray that he's happy and in a better place and we miss him."
Savage, an Ohio native, rose to fame in the 1980s and 1990s, when he began competing in the World Wrestling Federation, World Championship Wrestling and later, the WWE. Savage held some 20 championships during his career and his signature wrestling move was the "Elbow drop off the top rope". He was trained by his father, Angelo, who was also a wrestler.
Wrestling star Bret "The Hitman" Hart Tweeted: "I have no words to say. This one hits me hard. We lost one of the best."
"Rowdy" Roddy Piper, another former wrestler, said he was "too sad to Tweet" and later added: "I'm going to drive. Wrestlers think best when they drive. All my love to Lanny and his daddy Angelo! Wrestled them both. My hearts hurts 4 U."
Shawn Michaels said fellow wrestling star and reality star Chris Jericho texted him the news of Savage's death.
"We've lost one of the greats!!" Michaels Tweeted. "Our prayers go out to the family & friends of Randy Savage."
"Randy Savage was a true influence and inspiration to me and taught me some very important lessons, in and out of the ring," Jericho Tweeted. "Rest in peace."
Savage largely left competitive wrestling about six years ago. His likeness is featured in the THQ video game "WWE All Stars" (see photo, above) and a new action figure of him was unveiled at last year's San Diego Comic Con.
Check out a promo for the Randy Savage Ultimate DVD collection below as well as a video message from his promoting "WWE All Stars."