Roddy Piper, AKA ‘Hot Rod’ WWE Legend, Dies At 61
“Rowdy” Roddy Piper, WWE legend, died at the age of 61, it was announced on Friday.
“Rowdy” Roddy Piper, aka Hot Rod, Dies At 61
Piper’s agent, Jay Schachter, announced the news in a statement on Friday. “Rod passed peacefully in his sleep last night. I am shocked and beyond devastated. He was an amazing man and a true friend. He was one of the most generous, sincere and authentic people I have ever known. This is a true loss to us all,” Schachter said.
Piper reportedly died in his sleep after suffering cardiac arrest in his sleep. Though Piper was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma in 2006, the former wrestler was allegedly cancer-free at the time of his death.
Piper is survived by his wife Kitty Toombs, three daughters Anastacia, Ariel and Fallon and a son Colton.
Colton remembered his father on Twitter, calling him “a great man and my best friend,” adding, “I will miss him forever and will always try to be the man he raised me to be.”
My father @R_Roddy_Piper was a great man and my best friend I will miss him forever and will alway try to be the man he raised me to be
— Colt Toombs (@ColtToombs) July 31, 2015
RIP Hot Rod
Piper, also known as Hot Rod, was one of the original stars of the WWE, wrestling professionally in the ‘70s and ‘80s for the NWA (National Wrestling Alliance) before taking part in WWE’s first WrestleMania in 1985, where he faced off against Hulk Hogan and Mr. T. His career with the WWE lasted a decade before he transitioned to the WCW. Throughout his career, Piper was considered one of the best, most entertaining “villains” of the WWE, and he was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2005.
Both Hogan and Mr. T honored Piper on Twitter, as did many big names in the WWE community.
RIP Rowdy Roddy Piper! What a competitor?! I was honored to be your opponent in the first Wrestlemania. Bless You My Brother.
— Mr. T (@MrT) August 1, 2015
Totally lost for words,RIP,Roddy one,and God bless your family,I love you my brother,only love HH — Hulk Hogan (@HulkHogan) August 1, 2015
Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson remembered Piper in a lengthy Instagram post, in which he recalled meeting Piper when he was 12-years-old and his father was wrestling Piper in the WWE. “For weeks and weeks after that meeting I would have my mom set up a video camera in the kitchen as I would ‘become’ Hot Rod and mimic and emulate his every word, style, swag, heat, cool cokiness and all delivered with his classic smile (and my awful 12yr old afro). He was a huge influence on me as a kid and an even bigger one when I became The Rock in the WWE,” Johnson wrote.
WWE Stars Remember Roddy Piper
One of the true greats of all time. My heart goes out to his family and the fans he entertained over the years. RIP Rowdy.
— John Cena (@JohnCena) July 31, 2015
Roddy Piper was one of the most entertaining, controversial and bombastic performers ever in WWE… (1/2)
— Vince McMahon (@VinceMcMahon) July 31, 2015
…beloved by millions of fans around the world. I extend my deepest condolences to his family. (2/2) — Vince McMahon (@VinceMcMahon) July 31, 2015
I STAND BEHIND THE RODDY PIPER WHEN WE BOTH MAKE IT TO HALL OF FAME. FOREVER HE MY BROTHER. pic.twitter.com/Q8S8OtR6XT
— The Iron Sheik (@the_ironsheik) July 31, 2015
One of the most mesmerizing and inspiring people I ever met in wrestling… RIP Mr. Piper. And thank you for this… pic.twitter.com/rn7YNyn3jr
— Kevin Owens (@FightOwensFight) July 31, 2015