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Rocky Johnson dead: The Rock’s wrestler dad and WWE legend dies aged 75

Rocky Johnson, the wrestler dad of The Rock, has died aged 75.

A huge name in his own right, Rocky became National Wrestling Alliance Georgia Champion and NWA Southern Heavyweight Memphis Champion as well as a host of other titles across his career.

With partner Tony Atlas, he was part of the first black tag team to win the World Tag Team championship in the World Wrestling Federation.

He retired in 1991 and, along with Pat Patterson, trained son Dwayne to wrestle.

Dwayne would go on to become one of the most synonymous names in wrestling history, becoming a legend in WWE as The Rock.

Rocky Johnson [COURTESY]

Early in The Rock’s career, then known as Rocky Maivia, his father had an on-screen presence, jumping into the ring on his behalf after his son was attacked by The Sultan and The Iron Sheik at Wrestlemania 13.

But this was short-lived as the Rocky Maivia character flopped, which turned out to be a blessing in disguise for Dwayne.

In February 2008, Johnson was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame along with father-in-law Peter Maivia. The Rock inducted both.

Johnson’s cause of death is, as yet, unknown.

Fellow WWE hall-of-famer Brutus Beefcake tweeted: “So sad to hear that my friend Rocky Johnson has passed away. He was an amazing man who I admired greatly! God Bless you Rocky until we see each other in heaven!!

“Prayers going out to Dwayne @TheRock Johnson and his family. You’re in my thoughts always! Much love!”

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