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Buddy Colt

Real Name - Ronald Read

Birthdate - 1/13/??

6'1" 240 lbs. - Bladensburg, MD

Athletic Background - Bodybuilding (Amateur), Weightlifting (Amateur), Judo (Marines)

Teacher(s) - Otto Von Krupp (Joe Mercer)

Professional Background - Memphis(`62), Mobile(`62), Georgia(`62), Capitol(`62-`63), Phoenix(`63), Kansas City(`65-`66), Mid-Atlantic(`65), Hawaii(`66), Australia(`66), Oklahoma(`66), Amarillo(`67-`69), Georgia(`69-`74), Florida(`72-`75)

Aliases - Cowboy Ron Reed, Handsome Ronnie

Peak Years - `66-`75

Place in History - In 1975, two plane crashes in the Southeastern United States impacted pro-wrestling then perhaps any other accidents of that nature.  The more famous of the two involved Ric Flair, Johnny Valentine and Tim Woods in the Mid-Atlantic territory.  The other, which happened several months prior involved four noted heels in the Florida territory.  One was Gary Hart who went on to greater success, another was Mike McCord who was reborn as Austin Idol, one was Bobby Shane who died at the height of his career and the driver was Buddy Colt whose career ended at its peak.  Colt had really been catching fire in Florida as an arrogant bleached blonde.  Although his in-ring career ended, he continued as a manager, color commentator and even had a piece of the office.  After getting out of the sport, his future business projects were successful as well.  However, there is still something tragic about the career of Buddy Colt.  Ron Read was a former Marine, a successful judoka and an accomplished bodybuilder before entering pro-wrestling.  He toiled as a undercard babyface in his formative years before getting in with the Buddy Rogers’ clique in the Northeast.  He began his transformation a few years later in Oklahoma teaming with “Dandy” Jack Donovan as “Handsome” Ronnie.  The partnership was a successful one and allowed Reed to bleach his hair and move right into a top heel position.  Curiously, Reed left after a few months for Amarillo, where he took his act to the next level by adopting the “Buddy Colt” name and became the top villain.  He was a hot heel when he began in Atlanta.  Buddy Colt was a vicious heel delivered stoic promos that were highly effective.  His rivalry with Mr. Wrestling II did record business and led to him getting booked into Florida.  During this period, Georgia and Florida were premier territories and Buddy Colt was working on top in both.  It has been stated that he was in consideration for a NWA World title run and he would have been perfect in that role.  Although that did not come to fruition, Buddy Colt made a mark on pro-wrestling in the Southeast and is truly one of the greatest heels not only in that region or in that era, but of all-time.  He came up through adverse conditions, developed his character carefully and when the time was right moved into a top spot in two of the major circuits.  He should stand out as a prime example of how the territory system worked to create high-level wrestlers for over five decades and not merely be remembered as the unfortunate pilot of the plane crash that ended his career.