Paul Orndorff, one of pro wrestling top heels during the ‘80s, has suffered physical and financial setbacks in recent years, but was the subject of a recent social media movement that helped save his home.
Medical costs associated with Orndorff fighting and treating Stage 4 lymph node cancer had depleted his savings several years ago. He had been unable to pay his property taxes since that time and owed more than $9,000 in taxes.
A GoFundMe campaign garnered hundreds of donations from fans and wrestlers alike, raising $10,000 in eight days to get him current on his property taxes and help him purchase medication.
Orndorff, 69, whose career spanned from 1976-2000, continues to fight health issues including memory loss associated with the lymph node cancer.
“He’s having problems with his memory; a lot of problems with that,” former mat star B. Brian Blair recently said on The Genius Cast podcast. “He’s on medication that is helping. He only recognizes a couple people other than his family members. Luckily, I can pick up the phone and he can remember so many things. He’s always so happy when I call him. It’s part of my weekly routine to call him.
“He’s healthy. He beat Stage 4 lymph node cancer. I thought we were going to lose him but he beat all that. But with all that, it puts more pressure on his brain and he’s suffered multiple concussions.”
Orndorff, whose series of matches with then-WWF champion Hulk Hogan were among the highest-grossing of that period., was in the main event of the first Wrestlemania and main-evented a card in Toronto in a match against Hogan that drew nearly 80,000 fans.