Dedicated to Gordon Solie
January 29, 1929 - July 27, 2000
As we go to press, we are saddened to hear of the death of Elizabet Hullette, also known to millions of wrestling fans as, Miss Elizabeth. The obituary below is reprinted from wrestling-online.com. Solie's extends our heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of Miss Liz.
In this edition of the newsletter we have John Cross and Matt Benaka with the latest installments of the Crossface Connection and This Week in World Title History, respectively, plus my own TV Reports and topical rants.
by Colin Vassallo of wrestling-online.com and other sources
And so another one goes. The 'professional wrestler' whose name was not released yesterday turned out to be Elizabeth Hulette, better known to the wrestling world as Miss Elizabeth.
She was 43 years old. Liz was at Luger's house and police were notified after a 911 call to go on-site where they found her sick.
She later died at the hospital. She has been going out with Luger since the days of the end of WCW although they weren't married. Luger was taken into custody yesterday morning for questioning but was released later.
Hulette was born on November 19th, 1960 in Kentucky but then moved to Atlanta, GA., where she was residing until her untimely death. She was a graduate of the University of Kentucky, with a degree in Communications.
The 'first lady of wrestling' married Randy Poffo on December 30th 1984 but divorced from him in 1992. She then married lawyer Cary Lubetsky in December 1997 but again divorced him and moved with Luger.
She made her wrestling debut in the mid-80s managing her then-husband Randy 'Macho Man' Savage and moved on to manage other great wrestling superstars such as Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair, Chris Benoit, Lex Luger and Sting.
Liz was considered one of the first 'Divas' so to speak as she set standards for female managers.
Rescue workers were summoned around 5:30 a.m. to the home, which is located off of Powers Ferry Road, Cobb police spokesman Cpl. Brody Staud said.
He said Hullette died at Kennestone Hospital shortly after she arrived, but authorities have not yet determined her cause of death. "At this point, we don't know if it's a suicide, we don't know if it's a natural death (and) we don't know if it's a homicide," said Staud, who added later that there was no indication of foul play. Hullette was transported to Kennestone by ambulance. Authorities said Larry Pfohl, 44, also known as Lex Lugar, rode with her to the hospital. Neighbors said that Hullette was Pfohl's girlfriend.
Several hours after Hulette was pronounced dead, Pfohl was arrested after investigators found illegal substances in his home, which were identified as large quantities of anabolic steroids. He was released from jail Thursday after posting a $25,000 bond.
Authorities said police recently responded to a domestic disturbance call at his home two weeks ago, during which Pfohl was arrested for allegedly beating Hulette, according to a copy of the police report. He was out on a $2,500 bond in connection with that incident when he was re-arrested on the controlled substance charge. It was not immediately clear what the substance was.
According to Atlanta's WXIA TV in an article found here, the charges to Pfohl involve charges of violating the Georgia Control Substance Act after illegal body-enhancing drugs were found in the home. Those charges are unrelated to Hulette’s death. Police said they do not suspect foul play.
The WXIA article states that the domestic incident between Pfohl and Heulette occurred on April 19, when Pfohl was charged with battery after police responded to the same address and found Hulette with bruises to her head. Cobb police said that incident does not appear to be related to her death.
In a somewhat confusing note, while the above article states that Pfohl was released, 1 wrestling.com, however, reports that Luger DID remain in jail overnight, Luger is scheduled to appear Friday morning in the Cobb County (GA) Magistrate Court and is expected to be released on bond following that hearing.
The following statement was posted on Randy Savage's web site: "I am deeply saddened by this news, and our thoughts and prayers are with Elizabeth's family."
This week in World Heavyweight Title History saw a lot of activity by Jerry Lawler and Kerry Von Erich along with the first recognition of a World Champion of wrestling. I hope you enjoy it! If you have any questions, comments or corrections, e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org and please visit my web site at: http://www.geocities.com/mrbenaka/index.html
World Title History for the week of May 5th to May 11th
On May 8, 1988 Jerry "The King" Lawler defeated Curt Hennig in Memphis, TN to win the American Wrestling Association World Heavyweight Title. It was during this reign that Lawler unified the AWA and World Class World Titles.
May 6th of 1984 saw Kerry Von Erich defeat Ric Flair in Irving, TX for the National Wrestling Alliance World Heavyweight Title. Kerry dedicated the match to his brother David who died while on a tour of Japan. It is believed that if David hadn't died, he would have won the title that day.
Kerry Von Erich won another World Title on this week in history. May 8, 1988 saw Kerry defeat Iceman King Parsons in the same town he beat Flair, Irving, TX. This was his second run with the World Class Wrestling Association World Heavyweight Title. Interestingly, this win came the same day that Lawler won the AWA World Title from Curt Hennig. Later in the year Lawler and Von Erich would unify their two titles.
Jerry Lawler won yet another World Title on May 5, 1990 when he defeated Jimmy Valiant in Memphis, TN to win his sixth United States Wrestling Association Unified World Heavyweight Title.
The National Wrestling Alliance has another nugget of history on May 7th of 1989 when he defeated Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat to win his 7th NWA World Title in Nashville, TN. The significance of this match isn't so much the match as the history of the two wrestlers. They had traded singles titles back and forth since the old Mid-Atlantic days but Flair had seemed to pull away from Steamboat when he became a World Champion. This was the one time that the two traded the biggest belt in the business back and forth.
On May 5, 1988 Canek defeated Perro Aguayo to win the Universal Wrestling Association World Heavyweight Title for the 9th time.
The first recognized World Heavyweight Champion of wrestling earned that distinction in North America when George Hackenschmidt defeated American Heavyweight Champion Tom Jenkins in New York, NY on May 5, 1904. He would reign until Frank Gotch won the title several years later.
Guess what I'm gonna talk about this week...... ....well, you got it.
Miss Elizabeth was the greatest of the valets, the progenitor of the Divas, a timeless beauty and one of the icons of the 80's WWF.
I will leave the biography to the experts here at Solie's. There are greater minds than mine where personal histories are concerned. What I will recount are my impressions, and recollections, where Elizabeth Hullette is concerned.
Thinking back to my teen years, and the passionate loyalty I had to pro-wrestling at the time, her persona was the perfect addition to that of Randy Savage. His hyperbolic brewing, his barely-contained violence was perfectly foiled by her fretting, worried actions. Her guilt at helping him perpetuate his evil, and her fearful submission to his selfish wills and ranting put him over completely and utterly. I wondered why she would stick with such a selfish man, but she was loyal, even though her actions hurt others. She was in love, and that pure love was leading her to do things that she hated to do. However, for all his faults, Randy was her man, and she had to save him from himself.
For a long time, this was their formula. Such an angle would get tiring after a few months these days, but back then, there wasn't the weekly overexposure, and the outrage over Savage's treatment of her would blossom ever-new. Finally, Elizabeth sought help....in the person of Hulk Hogan, and the Mega-Powers were born.
However, the heel-ishness of the Macho Man, involving his complete selfishness and imperious jealousy, broke them up. Randy's defeat at Wrestlemania V seemed pure and just where Elizabeth was concerned. Finally, I thought, she would be free, and Randy would finally understand, now that he had been humbled, that she was dedicated to her.
Not to be, because Savage rejected her, blaming her for his loss, and turned to Sensational Sherri for comfort and care. Great heel stuff, folks. Everyone was hating Randy Savage back then, and for good reason! He only person in his life that was looking out for his own good was Miss Elizabeth, and we all saw that. We got it, and we knew that Sherri got it, too. However, she was using Savage, and finally showed it at Wrestlemania VII, turning on him when he lost to the astounding Ultimate Warrior. Then, completely out of character, Elizabeth struck, finally fighting for what she believed in, and purging that evil from Savage's world, and taking back the battered, failed, flawed Savage back. The face turn Savage had right then, with his sudden revelation, was one of the greatest in the history of the industry. His behavioral change was complete in seconds, even, for the first time that I remember, holding the ropes for his openly-emotional manager. This change culminated at Summerslam, where they were 'Married'.
Of course, I was 22 or 23 then, and when I wasn't overseas, I was getting involved in adult things, like getting married myself. I didn't follow wrestling for about a couple years, most of my free time being used to...well.....do newly-married type of things. You can use your imagination. Either way, I didn't note Elizabeth's departure from the WWF. Eventually, she appeared in the WCW, but that was Attitude, and though I was warmed by her appearance, the great appeal that she had in the 80's and early 90's was different. She never played a good heel, and the sarcastic, heelish behavior she displayed from time to time didn't seem right. Her last few months in the WCW were more in her mold, when she was being persecuted by Vince Russo.
About the person, there is no story that I have read that said anything except that she was a good person, and a professional. However, I am not an expert, like I stated above. I am just telling you my impressions.
Now, for Mr. Pfohl....
This is my opinion on him: There were rumors that the man was striving for one more run in the WWE, and it would make sense that the man, in an effort to get his 44-year old body back into trim, was taking everything he thought he could to get back into WWE-like shape. There is the sick indication that he was taking painkillers and steroids, and that was changing his behavior. He had been arrested for hitting Elizabeth around Easter, and for driving while intoxicated, when he wrecked his sports car with Elizabeth in the passenger seat. At the very least, he was involved in illegal performance-enhancing drugs and painkillers.
Damn, damn....the man seems to have been in a downward spiral. What sent him on that slow path is unknown. Maybe he had been told "No." by the WWE. Maybe he was depressed, or maybe there was some money problem. Either way, he was deeply listing, and the man wasn't getting help. I am sure Elizabeth was trying, hence his lashing out at her. That is what abusers do, unfortunately. Luckily, for him, the police have said that they aren't looking at him as a primary cause for her death.
His life, though, is on a rocky section of road. He is going to be paying for these last three legal problems for a long time. However, and maybe worse, he will have the nightmare of having to call 911 to report a dying Miss Elizabeth to relive for the rest of his life. I hope he wasn't the cause of this death....that would be a horrible weight to carry.
Remember, though, this situation is still in the 'fog of war' stage. Nothing is sure, save the facts of Luger's arrest. Elizabeth's blood work won't be back for three or four weeks, so we have to wait.
I pray for her family, and for Luger. I hope you do, too.
See you next week, for another Connection.
SmackDown! came to us on tape from Verizon Wireless Arena in Manchester, New Hampshire, but I didn't see it because I was stuck on a plane somewhere over the mid-west...
The next match was a challange contest with Jim Ross'job at stake! Jerry Lawler took on Chief Morley, if he wins, JR is reinstated. Morley dominated, naturally, but Co-GM Austin, who was ringside effectively neutralized Eric Bischoff while JR lent a hand, interfering in the match so that Lawler took the pin. Afterward, Austin beaconed the Coach to the ring and stood the three RAW announcers in a line in the ring. Saying they only need two for the show, he then applied a Stunner on Coach. Gosh, that sure made sense... After the break, Bischoff fired Chief Morley - who then ran into Stone Cold. Austin took him right back to Bischoff and started to dispute his right to fire Morley - then he fired him himself!
RVD and Kane put their tag team titles on the line against Scott Steiner and Test (w/Stacy). It was a pretty good match, despite Steiner's tendency to lumbar... In the end, Test accidently kicked his partner in the face, then got chokeslammed and Five Starred.
Backstage, Austin was strting to make himself comfortable in the GM's office, putting up his picture and and planning his Beer Bash. Some delivery men showed up with a desk - Stone Cold upended a couch to make room for his desk! Bischoff was pulling his hair out...
The Millennium Bug came out for his version of Piper's Pit (called "The Highlight Reel"). He had the ring decorated with weird modern art sculptures. He went off on a rant and promptly got himself into a verbal battle with Kevin Nash, his first guest. Before that confrontation could get out of hand, Jericho brought out his second guest...Triple H. As HHH headed down, Nash threw Jericho out of the ring then faced his former friend. Jericho then slid back into the ring and between the two fothem, the heels started to attack Nash. Jericho was quickly eliminated, leaving Nash and HHH in the ring duking it out. The fought back and forth around the ringside area, with Nash holding the advantage on average. HHH was bloody and battered as he tried to crawl away from the scene. Nash got hold of the title belt and used it to hit HHH. Then he started using stage furniture on his rival. Up on the platform, Nash made his comeback by smashing HHH against the doorframe. They fought in and out of a TV booth then out to the road outside. A van almost hit HHH, then when the driver got out to see what was going on, HHH tossed him aside and commandeered his car!!
After the break, the camera caught Chris Jericho admiring his handiwork, when Austin showed up to tell him that he (Jericho) will be in the main event next week...in a match against Kevin Nash!
Booker T took on Lance Storm in the next match...and lost in amatter of minutes.
Backstage, Stacy was accosted by the French Thugs (oh...all right...La Resistance), who offered her a job working for them.
The two Frenchmen took on Spike Dudley and Tommy Dreamer in the next match. Dudley was isolated for quite some time almost immediately. It's funny how they never call it a "Spear" when Spike does it. Dreamer was largely ineffective when he briefly entered the frey, then Spike was double teamed and pinned. La Resistance tried to punk their opponents after the match, but Test and Steiner ran out to get some revenge and incidently stopped the carnage while they were at it.
Backstage, Bischoff was on the phone trying to talk Linda into changing the GM situation back. She wasn't buying it. In another part of the building, Christian told Terri he planned to beat Goldberg later. Dream on, opera boy...
Trish got her rematch for the Womens' Title against Jazz. Victoria tried to interfere but was prevented from entering the ring by the referee. Thus distracted, he missed Teddy Long slipping the title belt to his wrestler to use as a weapon and win the match.
Goldberg was supposed to take on Christian, but Three Minute Warning showed up and somehow Goildberg ended up pinning Rico for the win...huh? Christian snuck back in and delivered a chair shot to Goldberg before fleeing for his life.
Steve Austin came down to present his beer bash - first he talks Goldberg into participating, then a swhole load of people came out in Stone Cold t-shirts to welcome Austin back. That was sweet...
At least that's the way I see it...
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