This is the 135th installment of the ‘Wrestling with Sin‘ series. A group of stories that delves into the darker, underbelly of pro wrestling. Many of the stories involve such subjects as sex, drugs, greed and in some cases even murder! As with every single story in the Sin series, I do not condone or condemn the alleged participants. We simply retell their stories by researching interviews, newspapers, magazines and various other sources of media.
Tomah to Handle
Princess Tonah Tomah was a real Native American pro wrestler who mainly competed in the 1960’s and 70’s. By 1987, Tomah was 52 years old and trying her hand at promoting in the Phoenix, Arizona area. Whenever the WWF came to town in that region, Princess Tomah always came to visit and hang out with the boys. According to Bret Hart, perhaps a little too much. Hart claims that Tomah who wrestled during the turbulent 1960’s believed a lot in “free love.” Princess Tomah was married several times and had four children.
Hart recalls a time when Tomah was backstage during a WWF event and she allegedly tried to convince Andre the Giant, Jim Neidhart and Bret Hart to have a foursome with her. Another instance, Bret Hart was walking in the hallways of his hotel and Tomah walked up to him and offered herself to him. Hart declined, but decided to play a rib on ‘The Dynamite Kid’ Tom Billington. Bret Hart and Tomah, who was heavily drunk, made their way to Billington’s hotel room.
Bret Hart knocked on his door and ran off while Tomah waited until Billington answered the door. When he did answer, Tomah who was wrapped in nothing but a bed sheet, removed it and walked into Billington’s room got on all fours and told Billington to “take her.” Hart quickly closed the door on them and started laughing and thought Billington would freak out on this older woman stark naked in his room. The thing is, Billington never opened his door back up the rest of the night. Turned out, Billington didn’t give a damn how old Tomah was and what she looked like. He needed it, so he took it.
Stop Being Such a Nag-asaki
Former pro wrestler Peter Thornley aka ‘Kendo Nagasaki’ was involved in a bitter land dispute with his next door neighbors for months in 2002. Nagasaki’s neighbor Angela Russell claimed that he was bullying her and her daughter to try and make her sell her home to Nagasaki. Apparently, Nagasaki wanted her land to expand his own home. When she refused, he allegedly became angry and started harassing her in different ways to try and force her out. Ms. Russell alleged that Nagasaki tried verbally intimidating her and when that didn’t work, started damaging her property.
Kendo Nagasaki allegedly threw bags of pills and tissues into her garden continuously. He also cut down ivy from her wall that had been there for over 90 years. Nagasaki denied dumping anything into her garden but did admit to cutting down the ivy as he said it was on his land. The police were called and they investigated the matter. Nagasaki faced a few misdemeanors in the land battle.
Pro Wrestling-Fury was a Japanese based promotion that was run by wrestler/trainer Kazuma Fujita. The wrestling promotion lasted well over a decade. In 2009, however, Fury was embroiled in a big scandal. Pro Wrestling Fury president Hiroshi Nishida was federally indicted on tax evasion and embezzlement charges.
The scandal saw Nishida get arrested and a bitter civil war ensued between talent and management that lingered for a few more years. The company had most of its assets frozen by the Japanese government while the investigation was going on. By the time Fury’s assets were finally released, the promotion went into severe debt and eventually folded in 2012.
Tiger on the Prowl
In the mid 1980’s, in the Florida territory at the Bayfront Center in St. Petersburg, wrestler Tiger Conway Jr. saw a beautiful woman backstage. Conway Jr approached the woman and started a conversation. The woman identified herself as Billy Jack Haynes girlfriend and walked away. That didn’t stop Conway Jr as he began to follow her and continued to make advances towards her.
The woman went to Billy Jack and told him how she was being harassed. Billy Jack waited for Tiger Conway Jr to have his match, after it was over and Tiger walked into the back, Billy Jack confronted him and began punching and kicking Conway Jr. The beating was apparently so bad, that Tiger was hospitalized for at least three days after the attack.
Daddy’s Day Out
‘Big Daddy’ Gene Lipscomb was a professional football player who moonlighted as a professional wrestler during the NFL’s off seasons in the early 1960’s. On May 10th, 1963, Lipscomb and a friend went drinking and partying all night long in Baltimore, Maryland. After partying, Lipscomb went to his friend’s apartment and they shared a bag of heroine. Hours later, his friend found Lipscomb slumped over his kitchen table. He called an ambulance and Gene Lipscomb was rushed to a nearby hospital.
Lipscomb was pronounced dead and a toxicology report later revealed he had overdosed on the heroine he shared with his friend. The medical examiner said that Lipscomb had taken such a large amount of the drug that would have been meant for five men. His friend was later arrested and charged with possession of drug paraphernalia. ‘Big Daddy’ Lipscomb was just 31 years old at the time of his death.
You can read all previous ‘Wrestling with Sin’ pieces here.