By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
Joe Laurinaitis, who wrestled as Road Warrior Animal, died at age 60 on Tuesday night. TMZ.com reports that Laurinaitis died of natural causes while staying at the Tan-Tar-A Resort in Osage Beach, Missouri.
Powell’s POV: Animal and Hawk (Mike Hegstrand) were one of the most popular and successful tag teams of all-time. They were both trained by Eddie Sharkey and managed by Paul Ellering during their peak years. Animal is the brother of WWE executive John Laurinaitis, and their brother Marcus also wrestled as The Terminator. Animal’s son James was a standout football player at Ohio State University and went on to play for the Rams and Saints in the NFL. On a personal note, I had the pleasure of appearing on a couple of radio shows with Animal in the Twin Cities. As someone who grew up watching the Road Warriors in the AWA and elsewhere, it was truly an honor to have that experience. My condolences go out to his family, friends, and fans.
At this time, we would like to confirm the passing of Joseph Laurinaitis aka Road Warrior Animal at the age of 60. The family is planning to release a statement later today. At this time we ask for you to keep everyone in your thoughts and prayers. #OhWhatARush
— RoadWarriorAnimal (@RWAnimal) September 23, 2020