Where Wrestling's Regional History Lives!
- Steve Webber
Two of my
correspondents have brought to my attention two important workers I
forgot to mention earlier. The
first is Berry O (Orton), the younger brother of Bob Orton, Jr.
He was involved in the famous hypodermic incident detailed on the
Kayfabe Memories ICW message board.
He was involved in a match with Ronnie Garvin when Izzy Slapowitz
injected Garvin with an unknown substance.
Garvin began to foam at the mouth, and fans no doubt feared for
his life. The hypodermic,
for those of you not weaned on the southern style of wrasslin’, was an
old standby. One other
worker I forgot to profile was only a jobber in ICW, and as far as I
know he only worked a few matches.
This worker was a very young, dark-haired Buddy Landel.
The only match I’ve seen involving Buddy in ICW is a squash at
the hands of Bob Orton, Jr. Buddy,
of course, went on to become a legend in his own right.
ICW took several of Knoxville/Southeastern’s top talent, and also took a few of their angles. Following Ox Baker’s victory over Randy Savage and Ox’s subsequent rampage at the Johnson City Rec. Center, he was told that there was one person he couldn’t push around. That person was Ronnie Garvin. Of course any heel who spent much time in ICW would eventually have to face the One Man Gang, just as anyone who went on a rampage in Memphis would eventually have to face the King. During one of Ox’s meetings with Garvin danged if Ox’s dentures didn’t fall out of his mouth. Garvin knew exactly what to do, the same thing having occurred in a match with Professor Boris Malenko in Southeastern a few years earlier (of course the same thing also happened with Malenko and Wahoo McDaniel in Mid-Atlantic in the seventies). After looking at the crowd for approval, Garvin proceeded to crush Ox’s dentures into tiny pieces. On the next week’s TV show , Garvin came out with a wrapped present for Ox. Ox pulled off the paper to find a can of soup. This drove the crowd wild and enraged Ox. I was fortunate enough to see one of their matches live, and there was something in it for fans of both Garvin and Ox. In a match that featured the first profanity I ever heard from a wrestler in the ring (Ox called Garvin an SOB after being kicked in the family jewels), Garvin managed to come out on top. However, Ox’s fans gained a measure of satisfaction after the match when Garvin tried to hit Ox with a chair. The ref grabbed the chair, and while Garvin was exposed Ox took the opportunity to land his patented heart punch. Yes!!! Ox may not have been the best worker in the business, but I thought he played the “Big Mean SOB” role to perfection. One of my prized possessions is an autographed picture of Ox.More...