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Al Tomko

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Al Tomko (November 22, 1931) was a Canadian professional wrestler and wrestling promoter.

Career

Tomko started out as a wrestler in his hometown of Winnipeg in the 1950s with his own promotion, the Olympia Wrestling Club. After he shut down the Olympia Club to pursue non-wrestling ventures, he would join the larger Madison Wrestling Club in the 1960s and become one of that promotion's top heels; he would later buy the Madison Club in 1967 and merge it with the American Wrestling Association in 1968. He acted as the AWA's Winnipeg promoter from 1966 through to the mid-1970s, sometimes wrestling on the promotion's local shows as "Crazy Legs" Leroy Hirsch, and he was credited with launching the career of Roddy Piper.

Tomko later left Winnipeg and headed to Vancouver, where he bought Sandor Kovacs' ownership stake in NWA All Star Wrestling in 1977. While promoting the Vancouver territory, he began pushing himself as All Star's top star in the early-1980s (despite his age, being physically past his prime, and lacking wrestling skills) and gave himself almost all of All Star's championships (including the Vancouver version of the NWA Canadian Heavyweight title) at various points. Under Tomko's leadership, All Star went into decline (with co-owner Gene Kiniski selling his share of the company in 1985) and would be out of business by 1989.

Tomko died of pancreatic cancer at age 77 on August 5, 2009.[1]

Championships and accomplishments

Trivia

Al Tomko is not the father of current TNA star Travis Tomko. He does have two sons who also wrestled - Todd Tomko (who used the ring name Rick Davis) and Terry Tomko (who competed as The Frog, first while wearing a mask, and later unmasked).

References

  1. Al Tomko -- a true original -- dies

External links

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