5 surprising things you didn't know about Vince McMahon Sr

Vince McMahon Sr. and Jr.
Vince McMahon Sr. and Jr.

Yesterday marked 35 years since the day one of the greatest promoters in the history of professional wrestling breathed his last.

May 24th, 1984. The first ever WrestleMania was still less than a year away. Vincent James McMahon died peacefully at the age of 69, leaving behind him a legacy that was matched by none until of course, his son Vince McMahon did the unthinkable.

Born on July 6th, 1914, Vince McMahon Senior's Capitol Wrestling Corporation dominated the North American pro-wrestling market in the 50s and the 60s, primarily in the Northeast region. He was one of the first promoters to split gate revenue with his wrestlers. Unlike Vince McMahon, his father believed that a promoter's place is in the backstage area, from where he should look over the action going on inside the squared circle. This was the reason why he was rarely seen on TV.

On the 35th anniversary of Vince McMahon Sr.'s passing, let's take a look at 5 surprising things you probably didn't know about him

Also read: 5 WWE Superstars who did regular jobs after retirement

#5 He had friendly relations with his competitors

Vince Sr. with Toots Mondt and Bruno Sammartino
Vince Sr. with Toots Mondt and Bruno Sammartino

In the 80s, when Vince McMahon Sr. sold off his company to his son, Vince McMahon proceeded to take over territories one after the other. Soon, the entire North American pro-wrestling market was in Vince's hands. It was a ruthless decision that helped Vince McMahon make WWE the biggest wrestling company in the whole world, which now boasts one billion followers on social media.

Vince Sr. always maintained friendly relations with his competitors and was of the opinion that everyone should be able to make their living and co-exist with each other in the industry. It was a time when companies worked together in regards to contracts and event schedules, and Vince Sr. never directly tried to put his competition out of business.

#4 He reunited with Vince when he was 12 years old

The father-son duo
The father-son duo

When Vince McMahon was a baby, Vince Sr. left his family and took along his other son, Rod, with him. The reason for Vince Sr.'s departure never came out in the open, but it left Vince and his mother in an extremely tough situation. After his father's departure, Vince spent most of his childhood in poverty, but it all came to an end when his father reunited with the family when he was 12 years old.

Also read: 5 WCW rejects who became megastars in WWE


Everything for forgotten instantly and Vince McMahon began taking a real interest in his father's business. The father-son duo connected on a deep level and they never looked back. Vince has credited his father with never being physically or mentally abusive towards him. The relationship between the two only grew from this point on.

#3 He didn't want Hulk Hogan to appear in Rocky 3

Hogan in Rocky 3
Hogan in Rocky 3

As we have already discussed, Vince Sr. was a traditional man and was of the belief that a promoter should never become a part of the action on screen. Additionally, he believed that the wrestlers should be faithful to their job, and not try to delve into other professions.

Also read: 5 Superstars Triple H will push when Vince McMahon steps down

While selling WWE to his son, Vince Sr. told Hulk Hogan, a top heel at the time, to not appear in the movie Rocky 3. Hogan ended up doing it anyway, and was fired as a result. He wrestled in AWA for a while and came back to WWE eventually. This turned out to be the greatest decision of his life, as Hogan went on to become quite possibly the biggest Superstar of all time. The first nine WrestleMania events saw Hogan being involved in the headline matches in some capacity, something no other Superstar has done since.

#2 His father created the promotion that is now WWE

Jess McMahon
Jess McMahon

Jess McMahon, Vince Sr.'s father, began co-promoting boxing events in the early years of the 20th century, along with his brother Roderick. The duo also promoted a basketball team for a brief period, but Jess soon split up with his brother and began promoting wrestling shows independently.

Also read: 5 times Vince McMahon saved the careers of his rivals


This was a tough nut to crack for Jess, as television was yet to be invented and pro-wrestling wasn't gaining much recognition. Nevertheless, Jess somehow managed to keep his promotion running for decades on end, and was dubbed by many as one of the best bookers in the region. Eventually, he teamed up with Toots Mondt to create the Capitol Wrestling Corporation in 1952, but died a couple of years later. The CWC was left in the hands of Vince Sr. who turned it into one of the biggest promotions in North America.

#1 He didn't want Vince McMahon to become a wrestler

Vince's incredible physique
Vince's incredible physique

Ever since Vince McMahon met his father at the age of 12, he had always wanted to become a pro-wrestler. He began working out and built up the foundation for the incredible body he boasted on TV several times. But Vince Sr. wasn't thrilled with the idea of his son becoming a pro-wrestler.

Also read: 5 moments that made Vince McMahon the most hated heel of all time


He knew that Vince McMahon was going to take over the business at some point of time in the near future, and wanted his son to keep his tradition alive, which included not becoming a part of the in-ring action. Vince Jr. was still allowed by his father to become a commentator in his company, but he kept the tradition alive while Vince Sr. was around. Years after his father's death, Vince McMahon would go on to appear on TV more often, resulting in the birth of one of the greatest heels of all time, Mr. McMahon.

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Edited by Zaid Khan
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