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Billy Red Lyons (1932-2009)

  

Real Name

William Snip

Birthdate - 5/17/1932 - 6/22/2009

6'2" 240 - Hamilton, ONT


Athletic Background - n/a

Teacher(s) - Jimmy Simms

Professional Background - n/a

Aliases - William Snip, William Lyons

Peak Years - 1970s

Place in History

Billy Red Lyons is known to two generations of pro-wrestling fans; one remembers him for his career in the ring and another for his time as a commentator, announcer and interviewer for Maple Leaf Wrestling. He broke into pro-wrestling during the Golden Age of the sport and had the size, athletic ability and even the handle to fit right in. Nicknamed “Red” due to his red hair, Billy Red developed into a well-respected wrestler in his home region of Toronto, where he wrestled near the top throughout the late 1950s and early 1960s. However, Lyons really found his place in the AWA. Upon his debut, Lyons unmasked Dr. X (Dick Beyer aka The Destroyer), who was conveniently his brother-in-law. Soon after that he was paired with another strong talent, Red Bastien and the two were dubbed “The Flying Redheads.” Bastien was an inventive flyer at the time, while Lyons was more of a mat wrestler and although the reasoning behind their teaming seems odd, they were a perfect tag team. In the AWA, they were top stars, usually feuding with the Vachon brothers. They toured the Midwest and were successful everywhere they went, but their time passed and they went their separate ways. Billy Red had another popular tag team with Dewey Robertson, but as the years passed, Lyons needed to get out. He joined the Toronto office and did all kinds of work behind the microphone, where he built a name for himself. His catchphrase, "Don'tcha dare miss it!" became a hallmark for Maple Leaf Wrestling. After the city was taken over the WWF, Lyons worked for them for a while for another twelve years. Billy Red Lyons is often best remembered for his plug that ended the Toronto TV show, but that followed a memorable career including a run in one of the greatest babyface tag teams of all-time.


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