John Tenta

John Tenta

Surrey, Greater Vancouver Regional District, British Columbia, Canada
Death 7 Jun 2006 (aged 42)
Sanford, Seminole County, Florida, USA
Burial Dickinson, Galveston County, Texas, USA
Plot Section A - St Anthony
Memorial ID 14535108 · View Source
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Professional Wrestler. After making a name for himself on the gridiron at Louisiana State University, he surprised his friends and family by moving to Japan and training to become a sumo wrestler. According to the SLAM! Wrestling Canadian Hall of Fame, "He was known there as Kototenzan (Heavenly Mountain Harp) and was only the second non-Japanese to train in the ancient art." While in Japan, Tenta met the legendary professional wrestling star and promoter known as Giant Baba and began training to become a wrestler. He debuted in Japan in 1987. The late 80s was the peak era for large men in wrestling, and Vince McMahon signed the 400+ lb. Tenta to the World Wrestling Federation in the fall of 1989. As a member of the WWF, Tenta was beamed into households all over America as the mighty Earthquake. After laying waste to "Hacksaw" Jim Duggan at Wrestlemania VI in front of 60,000 fans, Tenta entered a program with Hulk Hogan that culminated in main event level matches at the Summerslam and Survivor Series pay per views in 1990. The Earthquake went on to wrestle in Wrestlemanias VII, VIII, X and XVII as well, and in 1992 as one half of the tag team "The Natural Disasters" he captured the WWF World Tag Team Titles with Typhoon. This was Tenta's only major championship win during his wrestling career. After leaving the WWF he signed with World Championship Wrestling, taking the moniker "Avalanche." He soon becaame "The Shark" and feuded once again with Hulk Hogan as a member of the Dungeon of Doom faction. Tenta last appeared on a major wrestling program in 1998 as "Golga," a masked member of the WWF's Oddities group, and then in the gimmick battle royal at Wrestlemania XVII in 2001. He passed away at the age of 42 after a long battle with bladder cancer that spread to his lungs.

Bio by: Nick W.




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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Originally Created by: Nick W.
  • Added: 7 Jun 2006
  • Find a Grave Memorial 14535108
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for John Tenta (22 Jun 1963–7 Jun 2006), Find a Grave Memorial no. 14535108, citing Mount Olivet Catholic Cemetery, Dickinson, Galveston County, Texas, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .