Tribute to the Fabulous Moolah
By Abiel Tesfamariam
Five years ago from this past November, the Fabulous Moolah was announced dead. This moment was very crestfallen moment. She was the greatest female wrestler of all time and had made a huge impact for women wrestling all around the world.
She was born in July 22, 1923. She always dreamed about wrestling and had it on her mind since she was ten. At the age of 14 she married a 21-year-old man and had kids later on. She divorced her husband who name was Carroll. She was only fifteen, she left her daughter to pursue on her wrestling career.
In 1940 she started to wrestle with the legendary Mildred Burke. Her first match was with June Byers. She left the wrestling promotion at where she wrestled at and went to the WWF.
Years later in 1956, Fabulous Moolah accomplished something huge. She won the women's champion from current nwa title holder Judy Grable from a thirteen women battle royal. After winning it, she was called "The Fabulous Moolah." For many (I mean many) years she defended the champion against top female wrestlers around the world. She defended it against June Byers who came out of retirement to wrestle her. She defended it against ladies like Donna Christanello and Judy Grable. Nevertheless she lost it after ten years to Betty Boucher (Although it was never recognized), but won it weeks later. She also traded the belt with a japanese female wrestler Yukiko Tomoe. But one of Moolah's biggest accomplishments came in July 1, 1972. She became the first woman to wrestle at the madison square garden. This was a huge thing because she broke down one of the hugest barriers no other ladies can. She continued to hold the lady's champion for 8 years until Sue Green won it but lost it weeks later to Moolah. She also bought the legal rights to the championship in the late 1970s. She lost the champion again to Evelyn Green but also won it back later on. (Those title lost were never recognized so she was still in her first reign.) She also was a two time nwa women's tag team champion with Toni Rose.
In 1983, Vince McMahon, Jr. began expanding the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) nationally, and Moolah sold him the rights to her Women’s World Championship. Moolah agreed to appear exclusively for the WWF, and thus became the first WWF Women's Champion.
In 1983, when Cyndi Laupher and "Captain" Lou Albano met, history was made that forever changed wrestling. These two challenged each other to a match where they were able to choose their on wrestler of their choice. Lou Albano chose Moolah, while Cyndi Laupher chose Wendi Richter. Wendi won the match. This match happened at MTV's brawl to end it all. This ended the 28 year title reign. It garnered mtv's highest ratings up until that point, but it was also considered the birth of the "Rock N' Wrestling". A ground breaking era that defined and made wrestling extremely popular.
The Fabulous Moolah continued her feud with Wendi Ricther. Moolah had took so many female wrestlers to take the champion from Wendi Ricther, but it failed. Her last attempt to regained the title work when her representative, name Leilani Kai won the title. This feud continued on to the first ever WrestleMania in which Wendi won. After this was over, something very controversial happened. On November 25, 1985, Wendi was scheduled to wrestle a mysterious opponent advertised as a masked "Spider Lady" she lost the champion. But this was a screw-job. "Spider Lady" had got Wendi in a small package and only pinned her at 1, but the ref still counted to 3. Wendi unmasked "Spider Lady" only to find out it was The Fabulous Moolah. This became labeled as the first ever screw-job named "Original Screw-job" Wendi later left the wwf after the controversial finish.
Fabulous Moolah held the champion for 8 more months only to lose it to Velvet McIntyre but won it back. She finally lost the champion to a debuting "Sensational" Sherri. Both of those two captained at the first ever survivor series. On Moolah's team was Velvet McIntyre, "Rockin" Robin, and Jumping Bomb Angels. On Sherri's team was The Glamour Girls (Judy Martin and Leilani) with Jimmy Hart, Donna Christanello, and Dawn Marie Johnson. This match was won by team Moolah in which the Jumping Bomb angels won.
Although she retired later on, she made history again. Moolah became the first ever lady to be inducted into the hall of fame. She also proved that age is only a number. She proved it by winning the women's champion and this made her the oldest champion in history. She proved to be a tough woman by even being rko'd from my favorite wrestler, Randy Orton. She continued to make part time appearances with her best friend Mae Young. Her final appearance was at SummerSlam 2007
When she died, it made me downtrodden. She always will leave a huge legacy for anyone and will always be remembered for it. Moolah, R.I.P.