Randy “Macho Man” Savage is considered one of the all-time great professional wrestlers. With his outstanding, muscular physique, his “OH, YEAH!” catchphrase, and the lovely Miss Elizabeth at his side, Randy grabbed Vince McMahon’s proverbial gold ring and reached the highest levels of success in sports entertainment.
Savage, who passed away on May 20, 2011, at the age of 58, won the WWF World Heavyweight Championship twice and WCW World Heavyweight Championship four times. As a one-time WWF Intercontinental Heavyweight Champion, Savage was voted the greatest Intercontinental Champion of all time by the WWE.
Over the course of his career, “The Macho Man” gave wrestling fans many amazing moments. Savage also crossed over to mainstream audiences thanks to his series of TV commercials for Slim Jim. In the commercials, Randy portrayed his “Macho Man” character to perfection while making an explosive entrance and encouraging the startled onlookers to eat Slim Jims.
In the ring, Randy Savage had some of the most celebrated matches and feuds in professional wrestling history. One particular match that stands out was his 1987 bout against Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat at Wrestlemania III. In an in-depth article for ESPN, WWE Superstar Jessie “The Body” Ventura, who did color commentary for the event, called it “The Greatest match I ever saw.”
“For me, it was the greatest match I ever saw. Ever. First of all, it was in the biggest venue in history, the Silverdome, where we broke the Rolling Stones’ record with 93,000 people. Of course it was Hogan and Andre, which was the big draw. But the ‘Macho Man’- Steamboat match was the greatest match that I’ve ever witnessed in my life.”
‘The Macho Man’s” first WWF World Heavyweight Championship came at WrestleMania IV in a 14-man tournament for the title Andre the Giant had vacated a month earlier. The event took place on March 27, 1988, in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Savage had to defeat Butch Reed, Greg Valentine, and One Man Gang in elimination matches before he pinned Ted DiBiase in the final bout for the belt. Hulk Hogan presented the title belt to Savage and joined him in the ring to celebrate.
Despite celebrating in the ring with Hulk Hogan after his first WWF Championship victory, Randy Savage had a tenuous relationship with the Hulkster, and they became bitter rivals on several occasions. At WrestleMania V, on April 2, 1989, at the Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, New Jersey, Hogan took the WWF World Heavyweight Championship from Randy Savage. As a result of his defeat, Savage replaced his manager, Miss Elizabeth, with ‘Sensational Sherri’ Martel.
Wrestling fans will certainly remember Randy’s often tempestuous relationship with his wife, Miss Elizabeth. Born Elizabeth Ann Hulette, she was married to Randy Savage from 1984 to 1992. During that time, she served as his valet and manager, but Savage’s real-life jealousy and over-protectiveness complicated their marriage, and they eventually divorced. The storyline highlight of their relationship was on the night of August 26, 1991, at Madison Square Garden in New York City, New York, when Randy Savage kayfabe married Miss Elizabeth in the ring at SummerSlam 1991.
After Randy’s tragic death, he was inducted into the WWE Hall Of Fame on March 28, 2015, by Hulk Hogan and Randy’s brother, Lanny Poffo. In a touching tribute to his late brother, Lanny, who was also a WWE Superstar, recited a moving poem about Randy Savage.
“His name was Randy Mario Poffo
He became the Macho Man
Randy Savage made it cool
To be a wrestling fan”
In an article in PWInsider, Lanny spoke about the emotions of inducting Randy into the WWE Hall of Fame.
“I had no thoughts. I was so excited. Intellectually, there was nothing. It was all emotional. I was happy for the fans. They waited for Bruno Sammartino for so many years and now they waited for Macho Man.”
While Randy Savage had his most famous moments in the ring, he lived life to the fullest outside the squared circle. He was an enthusiastic bodybuilder, and he enjoyed his downtime at the beach or surfing.
Although he thrived as a wrestling superstar, Randy Savage was also a complicated human being. Randy departed this world before his time at the age of 58 after suffering a heart attack while driving. It was believed that at the time of his death, Randy was unaware he was suffering from advanced coronary artery disease, which the coroner listed as his cause of death.
In closing, we celebrate the memory of Randy Savage with a moment of quiet contemplation.