Saturday, September 10, 2011

R.I.P. Little Tokyo

I just read that one of the greatest midget wrestlers of all time, Little Tokyo passed away as the result of a heart attack on September 6. Tokyo, whose real name was Shigeri Akabane, was 71 years old. Tokyo toured the world and was the Midget World Champion. He even worked a mixed match at Wrestlemania III, teaming with Lord Littlebrook and King Kong Bundy against the Haiti Kid, Little Beaver, and Hillbilly Jim.

While most people saw midget wrestlers as an oddity and an attraction for kids, the simple truth is that many of them were just as much respected athletes in the locker room as their larger-sized peers. Leroy McGuirk often gave midget matches high billing on cards, sometimes in the semi-main event. Tokyo and the others mentioned above, along with Farmer Pete, Sky Low Low, and Little Bruiser to name a few, provided solid wrestling and great entertainment during a simpler era. Enjoy these clippings of Little Tokyo. R.I.P. Shigeri Akabane.

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