TRIBUTE: Dusty Rhodes Passes Away

48 Submitted by on Thu, 11 June 2015, 15:25


Man, this is a sad day.  Dusty Rhodes has passed on, official story is here.  We’ve mocked him a lot over the years, but man am I going to miss him.

Post your thoughts below.  We’ll grieve together, friends.

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48 Responses to "TRIBUTE: Dusty Rhodes Passes Away"
  1. Jake says:

    It certainly is hard times, daddy. Gonna miss him a lot.

  2. Scrooge McSuck says:

    I’ll refrain from referencing his Hard Times promo, and go with something close to the WWF heart:
    When he came to the WWF in ’89, he was handed a gimmick that was designed to humiliate and
    embarrass him… and he took it and ran with it as hard as possible to get it over.

    • Autrach Sejanoz says:

      That’s evidence of the charisma & skill the man had. Nothing could take that away from him.

    • MWeyer says:

      I remember on his 2006 DVD, they openly say the whole polka dot thing was a rib by Vince but Dusty just took it and made it work like no one else could.

    • Ed says:

      I bought his DVD set a few years ago. I only really knew him from his WWF time and a little from his NWA days. I really had no idea how popular he really was until I watched that DVD.

      He was always fun to listen to.

  3. RD Reynolds says:

    Will never forget his autobiography.

  4. Drew says:

    Love him or hate him, he left a mark on the business. Tremendous showman, there were few that could work a crowd like him. RIP, big Dust.

  5. The Million Cent Man says:

    My biggest memory of him growing up were his feuds with the Big Bossman and Ted Dibiase.

    R.I.P. Dusty.

  6. Conquistador #3 says:

    Kinda still in shock. Its amazing to think such a force of nature as Dusty Rhodes can ever pass away. Nobody is left from that epic mixed tag match at Wrestlemania 6. Truly a sad day.

  7. Alexandru says:

    I am truly shocked Dusty was truly one of the best in terms of drawing ability and overall charisma. He could get over no matter the gimmick . He really was the “everyman” wrestler that all fans could relate too in one way or another. Loved his battles with Flair

  8. Sean Bateman says:

    He’s raising hell up there with Road Warrior Hawk

  9. John C says:

    Double bad whammy to the day started off by reading about Christopher Lee’s passing and then this way out of nowhere. Dusty had a way to pull you into whatever he did and made you go with him right into it. The intesity of the parking lot attack when you actually let yourself say, that was real, that couldn’t be fake. Then later on delivering that pig’s feet pizza with extra snout it had enough charm to make you forget Vince was trying to humble him if you will. He and Dick Murdoch will be tearing down the house somewhere tonight.

  10. Mister Pink says:

    For years, my video game characters, when possible, have worn the Black and Yellow Polka Dots as a tribute to the master. I only read about Dusty for years as a kid. Seeing him for the first time was an epic experience. He had your attention and wouldn’t let go. One of a kind. Gonna miss Big Dust…

  11. Raven7309 says:

    Shocked, saddened, and in mourning. The “Son of a plumber” was truly one of a kind. Not the best worker, but my god, he had charisma like no other. My thoughts and prayers go out to his friends and family. R.I.P. American Dream.

  12. TheDude says:

    Saw this on facebook earlier. Very sad to hear another legend has passed on. R.I.P. Dusty, your legacy will live on forever.

  13. Pérez84 says:

    RIP big man.

    Maybe your “wrestler breed” is now extinct, but your legacy will stay forever.

  14. Mav says:

    Dusty had insane charisma In an industry where looks are everything he defied all convention Quite an inspiration in proving it doesn’t matter what you look like if you have got it like Dusty did

  15. The Angry Jobber says:

    I’ll always be fond of his “getting funky like a monkey” with Sweet Sapphire! RIP Dusty

  16. Mike M. says:

    The idea of Dusty Rhodes vs. Ric Flair and his Horsemen was so classic and perfect. I’m still confused about how an athlete like Dusty Rhodes could have moved the way he did in the ring and endured all that he endured. His physical prowess reminds us that athleticism and vitality are not limited to a look. That look, by the way, is not the fault of Vince McMahon. It’s more a societal thing. Dusty could move like you wouldn’t believe and in the 70s and 80s, used to work high intensity, hour long matches.

    The promos were amazing. He was an everyman hero without condescending to every man. And when he went to the WWF and his character was blown up to cartoon proportions, he still slipped in things like (when dressed as a butcher) “you can’t beat my prices, but you can beat my meat.”

    The “Dusty Finish,” for all we make fun of it, kind of makes the soap opera possible. There would be no Professional Sports Entertainment without it.

    Of course, he wasn’t perfect. As Professional Sports Entertainment exists under a harsh gaze of scrutiny, Dusty’s shortcomings have been thoroughly outed. But, as we like to say, it is not an industry filled with saints. Though, as I type, that… are any industries filled with saints?

    Remember this… his real name is Virgil. That’s where Ted Dibiase’s bodyguard got his name.

    Today, we are all sad Virgil.

    • Enhancement Talent #2, Mark II says:

      Sure their are industries full of saints. Why, the Catholic Church of course……………………..oh wait.

  17. Andy says:

    Truly a sad day for all wrestling fans, as he was such a charismatic and entertaining soul.

    Rest in peace in that big ring in the sky

  18. Down With OPC says:

    Never forget Dusty going into the Hall of Fame here in Detroit.

  19. SCLSCL says:

    As everybody else in the world has been rightly pointing out, what a legend. People may try and laugh off his WWE run, but that’s what I knew him from growing up and the crowd reaction he would get no matter what WWE would throw at him just shows how he always connected with the crowd. His feud with Macho man never gets enough credit! Surely one of the most insanely charismatic wrestlers of all time!

    You know at the gates of heaven they will now just hear




  20. Reidah says:

    He’s getting down and dirty with Thweet Thapphire right about now.

  21. Josh says:

    Dusty touched so many talents over the years, was one of the most brilliant men behind the scenes, and was one of the few guys that could make chicken salad out of chicken poop. His legacy will be seen for years to come. Rest in peace, Virgil Runnels, Jr., the son of a plumber, the man to wine and dined with kings and queens, slept in alleys and ate pork and beans. You’ll be missed.

  22. Philip says:

    No doubt Road Warrior Hawk will be jamming a huge metal spike into his eye right now…

  23. I'll Be Your Zero says:

    Some people can be on Wrestlecrap a hundred times and will never be considered Wrestlecrap. RIP.

  24. J says:

    I hope they bury him in a polka dot suit

  25. The House says:

    He’s elbowing angels in heaven now. RIP.

  26. Bryan says:

    Dusty (Virgil Runnels) Rhodes is dead…..but the DREAM lives on forever. Whether he was “Dirty”, “The American Dream”, or “the common man” Whether he was wearing polka dots, a David Allen Coe hat, or his “bunkhouse attire”, whether he was feuding with the Four Horsemen, Big Boss Man, or even when he was (Midnight) riding “the finest piece of horse flesh in the world”, Dusty Rhodes personified the American public. He showed us not only the best interviews, not only memorable matches, but look at the life of Virgil Runnels, Having Polio as a child and almost losing his leg, born into low-middle class working family, digging ditches, son of a plumber, he broke the mold that life tried to bestow on him and man did he do it well.

    Dusty Rhodes? Virgil Runnels? No matter what he called himself this man was and is the poster child for THE AMERRRRRICAAAAAAAN…..DREEEEEEEEEEEAM. (cowbel cowbell cowbell cowbell cowbell cowbell cowbell cowbell)

  27. Ryan says:

    I wore a black armband with yellow polka dots today.

  28. Thun says:

    We’ll miss you, Dream.

  29. Jed Shaffer says:

    I grew up in an area where WWF was the only game in town, so I didn’t see Dusty on TV until he came to Titan. I didn’t get the fuss. I’d seen him mentioned in Apter mags, but he seemed like a damned fool in WWF. Little did I know, right?

    It wasn’t until years later, after he’d been retired from regular competition and would pepper Nitro with comments about “visitin’ the pay windah” and “bringin the plundah” that I understood who Dusty was and the value of his legacy. But I could watch all the tapes I wanted … War Games … versus Flair … the match that got him fired from JCP … it still didn’t really drive home the history the man embodied. It took somebody else to do that for me.

    Steve Corino. In a promo building up to their feud in ECW, Corino accused Dusty of cutting the brake lines on Magnum TA’s car. I remember being so shocked, so righteously insulted … the inner mark in me, long thought smothered thanks to the Attitude era, the blossoming IWC in the late 90’s and general maturity, suddenly rose up and wanted Corino to GET HIS ASS WHIPPED for saying such a heinous thing. It didn’t matter that I’d never seen Magnum wrestle during his career, I was just OFFENDED. Corino made me buy in, and moreso, he’d made me realize the true value of Dusty. How he was always noble, and he never seemed corny or forced for it. I bought in and loved every minute of Corino’s ass-whipping. And I loved Dusty for giving me a chance to look through a window in time, both to see a glimmer of his glory days, and to find my inner fan again.

    RIP Dusty.

    • Enhancement Talent #2, Mark II says:

      That brings back some great memories Jed. I really enjoyed that feud Dusty had with Corino in ECW too. If memory serves, Dusty had sent promos he filmed on his ranch for a couple of weeks to be shown on ECW TV. At one point referred to himself as “a bolt of white thunda flashin’ acroth the thky, babies.”
      I still chuckle at that one.

  30. Patricko says:

    First exposure to him was polka dot Dusty in the WWE. Who’s the fat guy with the odd speech pattern and The lame manager? Saw him get school-boyed by Virgil in a 30 second match on a live card, that advertised him vs. Dibiase, which further unimpressed me.

    But, Jesus, he was amazing in his prime. He could make an entire sold out arena go nuts, just by lifting his elbows! That… Is charisma.

  31. Erik Majorwitz says:

    I’ve been trying to get my son Brett into watching wrestling. He is hooked on WWE SuperCard and his first big pull if you will, was an ultra rare Dusty Rhodes, polka dots and all. When news broke of Dusty passing, Brett was upset thinking if you die that WWE would pull his strongest card and favorite wrestler. In an ironic twist, I showed him that wasn’t true, as I finally plunked down real money on the game and pulled an ultra rare Earthquake.

    I told Brett both of Dusty’s kids wrestle and he is quite sad for Goldust and Stardust right now having lost their daddy. I think I have a great kid.

  32. Piper's Armpit says:

    Noticed The Rock say The People’s Elbow was inspired by the Bionic Elbow. No doubt there’s plenty of stories like that out there – whether using moves or cutting promos. A legend in an industry with too few left.

  33. ed says:

    At least he had a good long life and career at 69. Too many wrestlers have left us too young – Henning, Warrior, Eddie G, Adrian Adonis, B Bulldog, Pillman, and so any more.

  34. Drew B says:


  35. BaltoJim says:

    World Championship Wrestling on Superstation TBS in the early to mid-80s (the Crockett years) is my favorite promotion/time period in the entire history of wrestling, when Dusty was wrestling and booking at the same time. His feuds with Ric Flair, the Four Horsemen, the Koloffs, and countless others are classics. To this day, I’ll take matches in front of a hot studio audience of 40-50 rabid fans over an arena full of people chanting catchphrases any time.

    Fans always mention (and rightly so) how he took the yellow polka dot gimmick, that Vince McMahon stuck him with to embarrass him, and turned it into a classic. But Dusty was so good, he could even tag team with a gorilla and make it work! (Search “Duthhh-tay’s Go-rilla” on YouTube and you’ll see what I mean). Sure, his partner was actually “Dirty” Dick Slater in a gorilla costume. But those old videos still crack me up every time I watch them. There will never be another wrestler like the American Dream.

  36. DaMoFo says:

    My first time seeing Dusty was in the early 1970’s. He was wrestling Ric Flair for the Mid-Atlantic tv title. Liked him ever since. By the time he went to the WWF run by Vince Jr, wrestling had already become a joke. The polka dots weren’t Dusty’s first trip up north though. he worked the WWWF several times against Billy Graham and some others.

  37. tom hastings says:

    One other legend that Dusty loved to raise hell with and who was, no doubt, waiting for his brother in arms from days on the road in the territories – Andre the Giant. RIP Dusty, Andre, and all the other great persons who sacrificed so much to entertain us over the years.

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