It is with great sadness that we must report that Southern California Pro-Wretling Hall of Famer Chavo Guerrero Sr. passed away today due to complications from liver cancer. Our thoughts are with the Guerrero family.
Chavo, whose real name is Salvador Guerrero III, was born on January 7, 1949. He was the oldest son of Gory Guerrero. Being the son of a pro-wrestler, wrestling was in his blood. He was a standout in amateur wrestling both in High School and while attending the University of Texas at El Paso and debuted as a pro-wrestler in 1970 under the name Gory Guerrero Jr.. He wrestled primarily in his father’s promotion in El Paso until 1975 when he moved to Los Angeles. He found instant success in Los Angeles, and won the Jules Strongbow Scientific Wrestler Trophy on July 31, 1975 in Bakersfield, California. A short three months later Chavo defeated Ernie Ladd to win the NWA America’s Heavyweight Championship, a title he would hold 15 times, the most in wrestling history.
In addition to holding the NWA America’s Heavyweight title 15 times, he also won the America’s tag team titles 11 times, and the NWA World Light Heavyweight title twice. His feud with Roddy Piper over the NWA America’s Heavyweight Championship is remembered as one of the top feuds in Southern California Pro-Wrestling History.
His success was not only limited to Southern California. He wrestled frequently in Japan and won the NWA International Jr. Heavyweight three times in All Japan. In the United States he won regional titles in Florida, Texas, and Hawaii, and wrestled in the Mid-South, UWF, and AWA. In Mexico he won the WWA Trios Tag Team Championship with his brothers Mando and Eddie.
Beginning in 2004 he joined the WWE as “Chavo Classic” and on May 18, 2004, Chavo Guerrero Sr. won the WWE Cruiserweight Championship at the age of 55. In 2006 he won the EWF Heavyweight title, beating Bino Gambino and Syrus in Covina, CA. He lost the title a week later to Syrus in El Monte, CA. Earlier this year he appeared on Lucha Underground in an attempt to help his son, Chavo Guerrero Jr. against Rey Mysterio Jr.
Chavo Guerrero Jr. was inducted into the Southern California Pro Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2001 as part of the inaugural class.
For more check out his Hall of Fame bio.
RIP Chavo Guerrero Sr. (January 7, 1949 to February 11, 2017)