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The Assassins (Jody Hamilton & Tom Renesto)


Jody Hamilton
Real Name - Joe Hamilton
Birthdate - 8/28/38
6’ 230 lbs. - St. Joseph, MO
Athletic background - Boxing
Teachers - Nick Roberts, Mike Dibiase, Sonny Myers
Professional background - n/a
Aliases - Ricky Monroe, Bolo, Mighty Bolo, The Assassin, The Flame

Tom Renesto
Real Name - Thomas Anthony Renesto, Sr.
Birthdate - 11/4/27 - 4/?/00
??? - Los Angeles, CA
Athletic background - n/a
Teachers - n/a
Professional background - n/a
Aliases - Tony Martin, The Great Bolo

Professional Background (as a team) - Georgia, Mid-Atlantic,

Peak Years - `62 - `72

Place in HistoryThe Assassins are true trailblazers in pro-wrestling history.  They set a standard of working heel tag teams that only a few could reach, they travelled extensively and always drew very well, they utilized the gimmick of the mask like few others and both were second-to-none on promos.  Their backgrounds were very different, but they converged in the Southeast and began a reign across the United States like few others.  Jody Hamilton was the younger brother of Larry “the Missouri Mauler” Hamilton and had cut his teeth in several territories including New York while still a teenager.  Renesto had worked around before catching a break as the masked Great Bolo in the Carolinas.  Other than working as the Bolos for a time from Jim Crockett, the Assassins quickly established their brand and enjoyed great success in Georgia, Florida, California, Western Canada, Japan and Australia.  The two became noted for their ability to work with any babyfaces, most notably a pair of over-sized hillbillies known as the Kentuckians.  The teams feuded in a number of places and drew some money with their program.  The Assassins were excellent in-ring performers who worked the crowds into a frenzy with their heel tricks.  Both were also among the best talkers of their era (and any era for that matter) as their eloquent and deliberate delivery in a normal tone of voice allowed them to stand out like few other heels.  Renesto continued into his forties, but largely retired in the mid-70s while Hamilton continued strongly with the Assassin name.  Both went on to have very different careers.  Jody Hamilton had some notable runs throughout the Southeast as the Assassin and the Flame.  Although he ballooned in weight, his promos remained among the best in business and he remained a viable star into the mid-1980s.  Hamilton went on to promote under the Deep South Wrestling banner, run WCW’s Power Plant and later revived Deep South as a WWE developmental territory.  As “the Original” Assassin, he achieved great notoriety and he introduced a number of men as Assassin #2 including Hercules Hernandez, Randy Colley, Roger Smith and his own son Nick Patrick.  Tom Renesto became well-known for his role in the “Battle of Atlanta” as he was the booker for Ann Gunkel in All-South Wrestling.  The group ultimately died and when Renesto switched offices, many speculated that he was the one who had torpedoed the group from the inside.  He would go on to book in several more territories often bringing his son, Tom Branch, along with him.  Many regard Renesto as an excellent idea man and he certainly maintained his excellent promo skill well past his active career.  Individually, the Assassins are probably not “Hall of Fame” caliber.  While both had success before and after their decade-plus run as a team, it was really that period that set them apart as innovative heels that set a standard that few of the teams that followed could emulate.