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Ken Patera and Joe Tangaro Inducted into the St. Louis Hall of Fame

Posted by flairwhoooooo on July 20, 2015

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Pictured in the photo are SICW Promoter Herb Simmons, MMWA Promoter Tony Casta, ring announcer Ben Simon, Hall of Fame committee member Nick Ridenour, 2015 Hall of Famer Ken Patera and MMWA’s Tim Miller.

By Brian Kelley

The St. Louis Wrestling Hall of Fame showcases talents that flourished during the days of (and prior to) the St. Louis Wrestling Club. The Hall features 33 legends including: Lou Thesz, Ric Flair, Harley Race, Bill Longson, Bruiser Brody, Penny Banner, and Sam Muchnick.

The 2015 inductees are: Ken Patera, Joe Tangaro, Eddie Smith, and Bill Apter. The first two, Patera and Tangaro, were honored at the historic South Broadway Athletic Club on July 11th.

Former NWA Missouri Champion and Olympic strongman Ken Patera was in attendance for his induction. On April 25th, 1980, Patera defeated Kevin Von Erich for the NWA Missouri Heavyweight Championship and lost the title to Ted DiBiase on November 21. He dethroned Jack Brisco to regain the belt on October 23, 1981. Patera would go on to wrestle for the AWA and the WWF in the 80’s.

Joe Tangaro was also honored July 11th at South Broadway. Tangaro was a wrestler, referee, and restaurant manager who won the hearts of fans in Saint Louis. He passed away in 1997 at age 70 after suffering from ALS. He was the president of the local chapter of ALS research and helped to raise thousands of dollars to battle the disease locally and nationally.

The Hall of Fame was founded in 2007 by legendary Saint Louis announcer Larry Matysik, promoter Herb Simmons, promoter Tony Casta, sports journalist Keith Schildroth, and longtime fan Nick Ridenour. All except Schildroth remain on the Board.

The inductions are split for two dates. Eddie Smith and Bill Apter are to be formally inducted at an SICW event in October.

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One Response to “Ken Patera and Joe Tangaro Inducted into the St. Louis Hall of Fame”

  1. I was honored and proud to hear about the induction of my father ,Joe Tangaro, I’ve been in poor health myself for several years, thus was unable to attend the ceremony with my family,this I deeply regret. I was struck by the fact that Mr. Patera was being honored with the reward on the a same evening such as he had been one of my own inspirations as a young athlete.I recall his Olympic weightlifting success and credentials from the sixties and seventies and still picture him in Strength & Health magazine as well as the accompanying articles giving instruction and insight into that sport’s arena so to speak.Dad was also a source of inspiration in that regard as he as a firm believer in resistance and strength training himself a discipline that he passed on to me. My athletic endeavors took me into wrestling,rugby,football and bodybuilding. It was in the latter of these that I pursued with an eye to becoming a professional. While I did reasonably well regionally it was the knowledge I had gleaned from that prusuit, in regard to anatomy and exercise physiology, that became the cornerstone of my formal education leading to graduate level studies and a post-graduate degree.As a health care professional and primary care provider it had been my goal to attempt to educate not only my patients, but the public about the benefits of lifestyle routines beneficial to improved health and wellness as well as informally educating people about the awareness of the onset and progression of such diseases as ALS. It was this particular malady that attracted my father. Since his untimely death in 1997 I have hoped some principal or official from the local or regional society of ALS would attempt to contact me as I believe I have insights as how to improve the compromised quality of life of one who suffers with this affliction. Dad was officially diagnosed in 1984 and survived until 1997.Clearly this is an atypical presentation of the disease, however I can’t but help think there was some benefits to the daily regime of diet,nutritional supplementation,moderate exercise as well as new pharmaceuticals which added to the unusual amount of time he was able to survive after his official diagnosis. It is in this regard that I am hoping to be of some assistance to anyone who has an interest in speaking to me about whatever useful knowledge I may have to share.Also that the local chapter of the ALS society would feel free to contact me and that through this avenue being for and of the St.Louis wrestling fan who may also know someone who has ALS would post a request to be in contact with me.God Bless jet.

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