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Ricki Starr (1931-2014)

    

Real NameBernard Herman

Lifespan - ?/?/1931 - 9/20/2014

5'9" 180 lbs. - St. Louis, MO


Athletic BackgroundWrestling, Boxing

Teacher(s) - n/a

AliasesBernard Herman

Peak Years - `53-`65

Place in HistoryBernard Herman was a legit amateur who placed fourth and third in the AAU Championships in 1950 and 1951 respectively.  He bulked up a little and joined the pro ranks, but was undersized to gain much headway in St. Louis.  It was during this time that he became involved with ballet.  While not exceptional in that field, he gained a sound foundation and was able to build the "Ricki Starr" character in West Texas a few years later.  Starr proved himself in shoots with fans and was able to get over strongly as a babyface.  Connected with Jack Pfefer, Ricki Starr became one of the notable touring attractions in the United States and Canada.  He understood the short-term appeal of his gimmick and traveled tirelessly throughout the 1950s.  Combating big, bad heels with his ballet moves was simple and effective.  His peers respected him as proven tough guy and enjoyed working with him because the matches were easy.  In the era where good guys with flashy moves like Argentina Rocca and Eduoard Carpentier got over quickly, Ricki Starr was able to emerge as a top star.  When his star began fading, Starr transitioned to other media, recording music and appearing on TV shows, and when the time was right he was willing to travel overseas.  Independent British promoter Paul Lincoln brought Ricki Starr across the Atlantic in 1963.  His ballet-dancing character was ideal for the British scene and Joint Promotions soon scooped him up and started him on the small screen.  The model was that TV exposure allowed talent to get over and draw in fans to the house shows.  Starr’s light-hearted act when paired with people like Mick McManus, Les Kellett, Johnny Czeslaw and others was a true crowd-pleaser.  He headed to the continent and found success there as well.  Starr altered his look for the 1970s with longer hair and a mustache.  He feuded with Jackie Pallo on the British independent scene, he continued to find success in the Germany and Austria, he enjoyed another run in Amarillo and he headlined Arena Mexico to boot.  Following his retirement in 1977, Ricki Starr left pro-wrestling behind completely and lived out his days quietly in Britain.

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