Pro Wrestler from Missouri, Harley Race, has died

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TROY, Mo (FOX2)- Harley Race, the tough-talking, Missouri-born professional wrestler who rose to national prominence over three-plus decades, has passed away at the age of 76.

His official Twitter account says,

FOX2 St. Louis reports, Race was born to sharecropper parents in the small town of Quitman in northwest Missouri in April 1943. As a pro wrestler, he’d be billed from Kansas City.

He began training as a teenager and started his career in the early 1960s.

Race won his first NWA World Title in May 1973 in Kansas City, Kansas. Race main-evented the inaugural Starrcade event on November 1983, losing the title to Flair in a steel cage match.

Race worked for WWE (then known as the World Wrestling Federation) in the mid-to-late 1980s.

With his in-ring career finished, Race founded World League Wrestling in 1999 near his home in Eldon. The promotion also served as a training school for would-be professional wrestlers and other independent performers from across the region. At present, WLW runs shows in Troy, Missouri.

This is a story we ran from 2001 about the World League Wrestling camp. We interviewed Harley and several of his students: Wrestler’s Matt Murphy, Trevor Rhodes, and Wade Chism.

Race was hospitalized in May 2017 after breaking both legs following a fall at his home.

Race was inducted into the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame in 2013 as well as several other halls of fame.

To read more on Harley Race’s life click here.

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