SHAWSVILLE, Va. (WFXR) — Professional wrestling fans in the region will see the end of an era this weekend. That’s when Jimmy Valiant will have his last match in the ring. It will be at the New River Valley Fair on Saturday night.
Valiant has wrestled all over the world for more than 58 years. Best known as “The Boogie Woogie Man,” he is a WWE Hall of Fame member. He will step through the ropes for the last time Saturday night at the New River Valley Fair in Dublin.
Valiant has wrestled a limited number of times in recent years. A year-long farewell, cross-country tour last year had to be canceled due to the pandemic. But the veteran wrestler says it is good to “lace up the boots one last time,” in his own hometown.
“You have to stop sometime,” said Valiant. “I’m about 80 years old. Hey, you got to stop the madness, man. It’s time, you know. You just got to pick a time and this is it.”
Lyndon Johnson was President and the Beatles came to America about the first time Valiant stepped into the squared circle as a rookie wrestler.
Since then, he has been a top attraction just about everywhere he has appeared. He sold out arenas from California to Madison Square Garden in New York City. His appearances for Jim Crockett Promotions’ Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling brought him to Roanoke and the New River Valley more than 30 years ago. That’s when he met his future wife Angel.
After they married, Valiant settled in Shawsville and opened his wrestling school, Boogie’s Wrestling Camp, in 1991. He has taught future generations of wrestlers there for the past 30 years.
Even though he will no longer appear as a wrestler, Valiant says he will continue to train students at his school. He will also make appearances as a Good Will Ambassador to meet and greet fans.
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