|Birth name||Terry Ray Gordy|
|Born||April 23, 1961|
Chattanooga, Tennessee, United States
|Died||July 16, 2001 (aged 40)|
Soddy-Daisy, Tennessee, United States
|Cause of death||Heart attack|
|Children||3; including Ray Gordy|
|Family||Richard Slinger (nephew)|
|Professional wrestling career|
|Ring name(s)||The Executioner|
Terry "Bam Bam" Gordy
|Billed height||6 ft 4 in (193 cm)|
|Billed weight||289 lb (131 kg)|
|Billed from||"Badstreet U.S.A."|
|Trained by||Archie Gouldie|
Terry Ray Gordy Sr. (April 23, 1961 – July 16, 2001) was an American professional wrestler. Gordy appeared in the United States with promotions such as Mid-South Wrestling, Georgia Championship Wrestling, World Class Championship Wrestling, Jim Crockett Promotions/World Championship Wrestling and the Universal Wrestling Federation as a member of The Fabulous Freebirds. He also appeared in Japan with All Japan Pro Wrestling as one-half of The Miracle Violence Connection.
Gordy held many championships throughout the course of his career, including the Triple Crown Heavyweight Championship, AJPW World Tag Team Championship, WCW World Tag Team Championship, NWA World Tag Team Championship, UWF Heavyweight Championship and SMW Heavyweight Championship. He has been posthumously inducted into the Wrestling Observer, Professional Wrestling, and WWE Hall of Fame.
A standout high school football and baseball player at Rossville High School, Gordy dropped out of high school following his freshman year and started wrestling in 1975 at the age of 14 as Terry Mecca for the International Wrestling Association. In early 1979, he began wrestling under his real name and formed The Fabulous Freebirds with Michael Hayes, with Buddy Roberts later added to the group. In 1980, the Freebirds moved to Georgia Championship Wrestling, where they won the territory’s tag team championship. The Fabulous Freebirds had feuds while there, including those against Tommy Rich, Junkyard Dog, Kevin Sullivan, Austin Idol, and Ted DiBiase. One match on the Saturday night WTBS Georgia Championship Wrestling show saw the Freebirds take on the Junkyard Dog and Ted DiBiase. Towards the end of the match, Terry Gordy gave DiBiase 4 consecutive piledrivers, which led to DiBiase being taken away in an ambulance. In 1981, the Freebirds split up when Buddy Roberts left the area. Michael and Terry then had a falling out, which led to a feud against each other. Terry and Michael eventually put their differences aside, and reformed the Freebirds as a duo in 1982 where they feuded with Ole Anderson and Stan Hansen.
The Freebirds came to Memphis the first time in 1979 and feuded mainly with Jerry Lawler & Bill Dundee. When in mid South Wrestling, he formed The Fabulous Freebirds as the suggestion by Bill Watts with Michael Hayes and Buddy Roberts. They returned in 1984 to feud with Lawler & Austin Idol and later with Lawler & Phil Hickerson.
In 1982, the Freebirds went to World Class Championship Wrestling and had a feud with the Von Erichs (David, Kevin, Kerry and Mike) that was kicked off when Gordy slammed the Cage door on Kerry during his Cage Match at WCCW Star Wars (1982) against Ric Flair where Michael Hayes was the special guest Referee, inciting a riot among fans attending. They traded the six man title back and forth a few times over the years. Gordy was also at one time one half of the WCCW American Tag Team champions. While in WCCW, Killer Khan taught Gordy how to perform the Oriental Spike.
Gordy teamed with Stan Hansen beginning in 1983 in All Japan Pro Wrestling. Gordy later teamed with Steve Williams as The Miracle Violence Connection. During his time there, he also held the Triple Crown Heavyweight Championship on two occasions.
The Freebirds spent a brief time in the World Wrestling Federation in 1984, but were fired after missing a show and showing up late and drunk.
In 1986, when the Freebirds were in the Universal Wrestling Federation, the former Mid South Wrestling, Gordy won the UWF Heavyweight Championship title and held it for six months, before losing it via forfeit to The One Man Gang, after an angle the same night in which Gordy was injured by "Dr. Death" Steve Williams. During this time, Gordy and the Freebirds had an ongoing feud with the Hacksaw Jim Duggan, in which Duggan and Gordy squared off, usually ending in a disqualification because of outside interference.
The Freebirds spent some time in the National Wrestling Alliance's Jim Crockett Promotions where they split to feud briefly, but later reunited. In 1989, Gordy helped Hayes to reform the Freebirds, with Jimmy Garvin, in the NWA, which became World Championship Wrestling in 1991. Later he alongside of Dr. Death Steve Williams defeated the Steiners to become World Tag Team Champions.
Gordy and Williams returned to World Championship Wrestling (WCW) in 1992 and won the WCW World Tag Team titles. They also won the NWA World Tag Team titles in a tournament at the Great American Bash card in Albany, Georgia, one week later, and unified the titles. Their feud with Rick and Scott Steiner; in Japan, this was hyped as a feud between the best foreign teams of the two top Japanese promotions (the Steiners were competing for rival New Japan Pro-Wrestling at the time). Despite advances by New Japan, Gordy and Williams, out of loyalty to the AJPW founder and promoter, Giant Baba, refused to compete for the promotion (which had business ties with WCW at the time), leading to Gordy's departure from WCW before Halloween Havoc and Williams' departure after Starrcade. In 1993 Gordy, while traveling from the United States to Japan for a tour, took an overdose of pain medication and slipped into a coma, ultimately suffering permanent brain damage. He returned to action later that year, but never received a shot at the Triple Crown again. In 1994, Gordy had a small reunion with Hayes and Garvin as the Freebirds in the Global Wrestling Federation where he and Garvin won the GWF Tag Team titles.
After World Class folded in 1989, Gordy wrestled in various promotions. He started working for United States Wrestling Association (USWA). In 1991, he worked for Universal Wrestling Federation where he feuded with Don Muraco. In 1994, he reunited with The Freebirds (Michael Hayes and Jimmy Garvin) for Global Wrestling Federation in Texas where they feuded with Bill Irwin, Black Bart and Moadib. Gordy returned to USWA in 1995 where he teamed with Tracy Smothers.
In 1995 Gordy worked for Smokey Mountain Wrestling teaming with Tommy Rich as the Militia. He would feud with Brad Armstrong. Gordy won the SMW Heavyweight Championship defeating Armstrong when he teamed with Thrasher to defeat Armstrong and the Wolfman on October 27. A month later he dropped the title back to Armstrong in a Country whipping match. Gordy left SMW before its closed its doors at the end of the year.
In 1996, Gordy appeared in Extreme Championship Wrestling to challenge Raven for the ECW World Heavyweight title, as the "internationally recognized #1 contender". He had been working for the International Wrestling Association of Japan promotion in Japan, wrestling deathmatches. He lost, but went on to team up with Tommy Dreamer and later to reunite with "Dr. Death" Steve Williams to wrestle The Eliminators. He also wrestled Bam Bam Bigelow at Ultimate Jeopardy in what was billed as the second ever "Battle Of The Bam Bams" (The first happened on a Windy City Wrestling show). Gordy lost the match due to outside interference from The Eliminators.
On February 11 and 12 1995 Gordy worked as the Executioner teaming with Mike Bell losing to The Smoking Gunns.
Gordy had a brief run in the WWF as The Executioner in 1996 and 1997. He teamed up with Mankind, both managed by Paul Bearer, and feuded with The Undertaker. The Executioner came to the ring under a mask and carrying an axe and Paul Bearer 's "hired assassin". He made his TV debut at the In Your House pay-per-view, Buried Alive, where he interfered in The Undertaker's Buried Alive match with Mankind, hitting Undertaker with a shovel and burying him with the help of Mankind and several other wrestlers. However, at In Your House 12: It's Time, The Undertaker defeated The Executioner in an Armageddon Rules match, and Gordy left the promotion shortly afterwards. His final televised appearance was on the January 12, 1997 episode of WWF Superstars, where he lost to Goldust, after which Paul Bearer turned on him by hitting him with his urn. He was advertised to be one of the 30 participants in the 1997 Royal Rumble match, but did not make an appearance. He returned to WWF one last time at a house show as the Executioner on April 28, 1998 losing to Wellington Wilkins.
On an episode of Something to Wrestle With, Bruce Prichard claimed that the Executioner gimmick was given to Gordy because McMahon had doubts that Gordy could still compete effectively and the use of a mask was intended to protect Gordy so that if that were the case, Gordy's legacy would not be tainted. Had Gordy been able to compete at a high level then there would have been the opportunity later for Gordy to unmask. It was mentioned that the hiring was mostly done as a favor for Michael Hayes.
Gordy returned to Japan working for International Wrestling Association of Japan where he wrestled in deathmatches. Mainly worked in tag teams. He left IWA Japan in 1997. In 1998, Gordy returned to Japan for the final time working for Wrestle Association R where he feuded with Genichiro Tenryu.
After leaving the WWF and Japan, Gordy worked in the independent circuit. On February 21, 1998 Gordy teamed with Dan Severn in a losing effort to Doug Gilbert and Dutch Mantel at the Eddie Gilbert Memorial Show for IWA Mid-South. Gordy would reunite with Hayes as they fought Glen Kulka and JR Smooth to a no contest for Power Pro Wrestling on May 28, 1999. He wrestled his last match returning to IWA Japan on February 4, 2001 with Shoichi Ichimiya, Tomohiro Ishii, Yukihide Ueno, and Yuji Kito defeating Doug Gilbert, TJ Shinjuku, Ultra Sebun, Takashi Uwano and Keizo Mastuda.
Gordy had two daughters and a son, Ray Gordy, who wrestled for WWE as "Jesse" and "Slam Master J" before being released in 2010. His nephew is Richard Aslinger, who competed for All Japan Pro Wrestling as Richard Slinger. His daughter Miranda currently wrestles on the independent circuit and has also competed in Japan.
Gordy died of a heart attack caused by a blood clot on July 16, 2001. In 2014, he was posthumously inducted into the Southern Wrestling Hall of Fame. A year later, he was also posthumously inducted into the Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame and Museum. On April 2, 2016, Gordy was posthumously inducted by his son into the WWE Hall of Fame as part of The Fabulous Freebirds.
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