Ric Flair And Paul Heyman Lead Tributes To Superstar Billy Graham

Superstar Billy Graham

Ric Flair has taken to social media to praise and pay tribute to a man who had such a remarkable influence on his career, Superstar Billy Graham.

Superstar Billy Graham, real name Wayne Coleman sadly passed away on May 17th following a lengthy battle with illness. The star was hospitalised in January as his condition worsened and it was revealed that he had been placed on life support in recent days.

Graham remains one of the most influential wrestlers in the history of the industry and the news of his passing has touched many.

Posting on Twitter, Ric Flair thanked the star for the influence that he had on his own career. Meanwhile, Paul Heyman said that it was no accident that after working with the legend, Vince McMahon declared that his wrestlers would be known as “Superstars.”

“Before Billy Graham, performers in WWWF / WWF/ WWE were known as professional wrestlers. After Billy Graham left his mark, Vincent Kennedy McMahon decided everyone would be a WWE Superstar. A most heartfelt RIP to the man of the hour, the man with the power, too sweet to be sour!”

Superstar Billy Graham Influenced Ric Flair, Hulk Hogan, And More

While other wrestlers may have won more championships, had longer careers, or performed in front of more people, very few if any had the influence on the profession of Superstar Billy Graham.

The likes of Ric Flair, Hulk Hogan, Triple H, and Steve Austin have all openly admitted that they took from Graham’s character to add to their own while Hogan’s famous use of “brother” in promos also came from the legend.

Billy Graham found success in numerous NWA territories as well as the WWWF, which would later become WWE. The star shared the ring with some of the biggest stars in the history of the industry, such as Dusty Rhodes, Bob Backlund, Bruno Sammartino, Harley Race, and Antonio Inoki.

Everyone at Inside the Ropes sends our best wishes to Graham’s wife Valerie as well as their family and friends during this difficult time.