One of the most talented, athletic big men in professional wrestling history died Monday.
Leon White, aka Vader, passed away Monday night after a bout with pneumonia, his son announced Wednesday morning on Twitter. White was 63 years old.
White’s athletic career actually started as a football player. He was drafted by the Los Angeles Rams and played two seasons before giving wrestling a try.
He eventually broke into the business in the AWA before getting a successful run in New Japan Pro Wrestling. But where White really made his mark was in World Championship Wrestling. White eventually won both the WCW world heavyweight title and the WCW United States title.
White also got a fairly successful run in WWE, which then was known as the WWF.
Injuries hounded White for parts of his career, and his post-wrestling days featured plenty of maladies, too. Most recently, he had open-heart surgery earlier this year before coming down with pneumonia.
Thumbnail photo via YouTube/WWE