Whatever Happened to Jimmy Jack Funk?


Brian Damage

Who knew that the legendary Funk family from Amarillo, Texas had a another family member? Jimmy Jack Funk was Dory Funk Sr’s dirty little secret. A third brother to compliment Terry and Hoss (Dory Jr.) Funk. In actuality, Jimmy Jack Funk wasn’t a Funk at all. That doesn’t mean that he wasn’t a part of his own wrestling legacy and today we ask Whatever Happened to Jimmy Jack Funk?


You see, Jimmy Jack was born Ferrin Barr Jr. The son of wrestler/promoter Sandy Barr and brother to the late, great wrestler Art Barr. Ferrin Jr wrestled in the territorial sytem for most of his career under the name of Jesse Barr. He won several regional titles mostly in the Pacific Northwest and Florida.

In 1986, Vince McMahon brought Barr into the WWF and instead of keeping him under his real name…gave him the gimmick of the mysterious third Funk brother Jimmy Jack . He was essentially Kane before Kane was a glimmer in McMahon’s eye. Jimmy Jack Funk was the Funk’s dark secret. He was the unstable, crazier brother who was locked up in the Funk’s basement for years because he was so crazy. Jimmy Jack wore a mask (in real life to hide his identity from fans) and carried around a noose with a cow bell on it.


He began immediately teaming with his “brothers” in six man tag team matches and was managed by the ‘Mouth of the South’ Jimmy Hart. Terry Funk wound up suffering a knee injury and would ultimately leave the WWF. Jimmy Jack and Hoss Funk formed a tag team and were semi successful. That is until Dory Jr left the WWF leaving Jimmy Jack Funk by himself. Once the last remaining real Funk was gone, so was their manager Jimmy Hart.

Jimmy Jack almost immediately turned from a star to a jobber to the stars. He was used mainly on the under cards at TV taping losing to bigger names like the Junkyard Dog, Blackjack Mulligan and countless others. He remained that way until an unfortunate encounter with another WWF star.

Jimmy Jack Funk had a legitimate physical altercation with King Tonga aka Haku backstage in which Haku tried ripping out the eye of Jimmy Jack. The only thing that saved Barr’s eye was Haku spared him seeing as Barr had a wife and kids. The altercation led to the release of Jesse Barr from the WWF.


Barr would travel to other territories such as Memphis and World Class using the Jimmy Jack Funk gimmick with moderate success. After 17 years in the wrestling business, Barr hung up the boots and tights in 1997.


So, it begs the age old question, whatever happened to Jimmy Jack Funk? After his retirement from wrestling in late 1997, he has appeared occasionally at wrestling conventions. He now works full time as a boilermaker and lives with his family in Louisiana.

You can read all previous ‘Whatever Happened to?’ pieces here.

5 thoughts on “Whatever Happened to Jimmy Jack Funk?

  1. I saw a few of his pre-WWF matches on VHS tape years ago, and he had a nice style. Too bad Vince didn’t use him properly. Team him up with Ron Bass, and you could have had legit WWF tag champs.


    • He’s actually a disaster insurance adjuster now and works around the states while maintaining a house in Louisiana.


  2. Pingback: This Week in Wrestling 2016 week 14 | Ring the Damn Bell

  3. I saw Jesse wrestle during the waning days of the Portland promotion, in a rundown former armory just south of the city. It was all pretty marginal — a makeshift “arena,” maybe 40 people in attendance, Sandy Barr hawking yellowed 8×11 photos — but they all worked hard and put on a fun show. The climax was a “blindfold battle royale” with all of the wrestlers on the card (supposedly for a 5-figure payout!), including (if memory serves) Steve Doll, the Grappler Len Denton, Ron and Don Harris (the Bruise Brothers), a masked Al Madrill, Mike Winner, Dirty White Boy Bobby Blair, Mean Mike MIller, and the eventual winner, Brickhouse Brown, who was the promotion’s latest push (referee was C.W.Bergstrom). But it’s hard to sustain much of anything when you only have a dozen or so wrestlers in town and lose your TV slot to boot. I chatted backstage with a few of the performers, including Jesse, who seemed like a nice enough guy. I asked him how he got into that Jimmy Jack thing, and he said (no sure if it was in characters) that the Funks were his cousins.


  4. I saw Jesse Barr one time remember him was a great wrestler love that match he had with Lex Luger enjoy those crazy days I’m glad you doing ok stay bless you and family.


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