It took me until August or September of last year and now we finish this year's class in three months and this is the biggest class of the year.
Orville Brown: Brown was one of the many stars from the state of Missouri, pushed to join the world of wrestling by former manger of amateur and pro-wrestlers Ernest Brown. At first, Brown was undefeated in his first 71 matches including impressive performances against former World Champions Jim Londos and Ed "Strangler" Lewis. Brown was named the first World Champion of the newly formed NWA. Brown was forced to retire from the ring in November 1949, following injuries sustained in a car accident.
Everett Marshall: Not much is known about Everett Marshall other then his long history in the Midwestern United States and a member of first incarnation of the NWA when it was known as the National Wrestling Association. Marshall had held the NWA Worlds Heavyweight Championship on only one occasion, but was the other side of the match that first opened the secret door of wrestling. In 1947, former promoter Jack Pfefer spilled the secrets of wrestling to the NY Times following a marquee match between Jim Londos and Marshall. Marshall was a major star for the Association during his time main eventing a number of events.
Whipper Billy Watson: William Potts better known as "Whipper" Billy Watson who was the biggest star north of the border in the 1940's and 1950's. As Watson's stock began to grow in Montreal he would spend time in other areas specifically St Louis where he ended the four year title reign of local legend "Wild" Bill Longson. Watson kept the territory hot with his match against Lou Thesz for the local title which Thesz won. Watson got his win back by ending Thesz six year reign as NWA Worlds Champion in 1956 which was only reign as Worlds Champion. Watson would spend 31 years entertaining fans in Montreal becoming one of the most beloved stars in the city having his last match in 1971. Watson was well known for his contributions to charity. He raised millions for campaigns such as the Easter Seals and was responsible for having 150,000 children join a safety club.
Judy Grable: Judy was one of many women of her era trained by The Fabulous Moolah and was one of the Moolah's top rivals during her career. Moolah's female trainees worked in Boston under promoter Paul Bowser, and in Boston, Grable and Moolah were involved in a feud. Known by her nicknames of the "Barefoot Contessa" and "the acrobatic blonde with the educated flying feet and was one of the top ladies in the era.
I'm proud to welcome these four legends of wrestling into the legacy wing and the Wrestling Express Hall of Fame Class of 2021.