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George Gordienko (1928-2002)

  

Real NameGeorge Gordienko
Lifespan - 1/7/28 - 5/13/02
5’10” 208 lbs. - Winnipeg, ALB

Athletic BackgroundWrestling, Football, Swimming (High School)

Teacher(s) - Joe Pazandak

Professional Background - n/a

AliasesFlash Gordon, Firpo Zbyszko

Peak Years1950s

Place in HistoryGeorge Gordienko was an enigmatic character in pro-wrestling. In the 1940s and 1950s, he was considered one of the best shooters around by some of the best shooters around. He was a well-conditioned athlete out of the Canadian prairies and by many accounts could have been molded into a world champion. The “Wonder Boy” slowly progressed into a formidable grappler before taking time off from the sport.  While pursuing other opportunities in US, Gordienko was arrested and deported for distributing communist literature.  This would prove to dramatically alter the rest of his pro-wrestling career.  Instead of pursuing a career in North America, he toured the world and eventually settled in Italy to focus on his art.  In the 1960s and 1970s, George Gordienko became one of the most widely traveled heavyweights in the world.  He worked in Australia, New Zealand, India, South Africa, Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Iran along with numerous European countries, where as an outsider he went head-to-head with local heroes.  His career was actually ended during one such battle with German Olympian Roland Bock.  Gordienko would go onto a second life in art.  He would return to Vancouver for the last years of his life, painting and writing poetry in seclusion. Although pro-wrestling has had many fine athletes that pursued other careers or lifestyles instead of becoming legendary figures, George Gordienko’s story is unique to say the least.

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