Again, sad news on my phone at 4am with the loss of AWA Heavyweight Champion Nick Bockwinkle.
Nick was the former President of the Cauliflower Alley Club and one of the most respected men in professional Wrestling.
I enjoyed seeing him at the CAC in Las Vegas, and chatting on the phone with him.
Nick appeared on my Classic professional Wrestling Radio Show and we talked AWA for hours.
Originally from St Louis, and then Minneapolis, before moving on to Las Vegas, Nick was just a fun person to be around, and such a mentor to those of us willing to absorb the vast knowledge he would share.
His Dad, Warren Bockwinkle was one of the greats in Professional Wrestling, which gave nick a lot of the passion for the business.
Teaming with Ray "The Crippler" Stevens to win The AWA Heavyweight Tag Team Championship, Managed by the one and only :Pretty Boy" Bobby Heenan!
They formed a tough Tag Team taking on Dick The Bruiser and the Crusher, The High Flyers, and what seemed like every week they worked over tag teams in front of Marty O'Neill, Roger Kent, and Rod Trungard, Wally Karbo.
Nick was a humble man who shared the spotlight even as The AWA Heavyweight Champion, he gave credit to Bobby, Verne, and Wally, AWA, Stanley Blackburn, and his fans!
Yes, even though he was a "Heel", Nick had the Bockwinkle Brigade! A Fan Club, and fans in Japan.
I was near the bay door when it went up after a card, and while fans were at another exit, I was starring at Nick who had a look of Please Don't Give Us Away, so I nodded, and they proceeded without notice. Nick told me he always appreciated that because Chicago fans would have been all over them.
I know so many people in and out of the business have stories to share, but I will cherish the time I was friends with Nick, and the things I learned from him.
Very sad to lose Nick and our sympathy goes out to his wife and family.
You'll always be remembered at Classic Professional Wrestling my friend!