G.L.O.R.Y. Legend Of The Ring
|Beverly Shade didn't get the nickname of The Hammer by accident. This ring heel was famous for hammering away at opponents until a win was securely recorded in the record books...and then maybe she'd hammer away a little longer! Ms. Shade certainly was not known for being one of the most rule-abiding ladies to ever step through the ropes. Teaming with fellow tough girls Tracy Richards and Natasha The Hatchet Lady, Shade traveled across the country (and around the world) working over and defeating some of the best female tag teams of the day. Fans who saw Beverly Shade in action still regard The Hammer as one of the best--and roughest--of all time!|| ||
Beverly Shade's Profile...
- Height: 5' 6"
- Weight: 145
- Hair: Blonde
- Eyes: Gray
- Hometown: Nashville, Tennessee (USA)
- Currently Residing: Yukon, Oklahoma (USA)
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- Career In Ring: 1958-1989 (31 Years)
- How It Started: I had always been a wrestling fan, but had never actually seen the ladies wrestle. I was living in Alton, IL. and my girl friend and I were watching TV wrestling. They had a ladies match on and we went bananas! Of course, we said *we* could do that. So, on Friday night we drove to St. Louis to the matches. We met with Sam Mushnick--who was the promoter--and told him we wanted to be wrestlers. He naturally laughed at us. We went every Friday night for two months and pestered him to death. Finally, he offered to send us to Columbus, OH to Bill Wolf's wrestling school. But before we could go there, we got a call from Sam wanting to know if we still wanted to wrestle. We said "yes"...and he put us on a bus to Tampa, FL. We went to work for Cowboy Luttrel. I was sent to a five-girl Battle Royal in Lakeland, FL. Ella Waldeck was one of the five girls. I am here to tell you that they beat the HELL out of me! After the show, Cowboy came back to the dressing room and asked if I still wanted to wrestle. I was so bruised and mad, I would have learned or died! Ella started training me. And that's how I got into the wrestling business.
- Wrestling Style: Super-Heel is a pretty good description of my style. Actually, I started out as a Baby-Face...but I just didn't enjoy it. I loved arguing with the fans. The more they booed me, the better I liked it...and the more I knew I was doing my job.
- Gear/Outfit/Costume: In the beginning, I wore regular swim suits and jackets. In 1983, Tracy Richards and I formed a Tag Team called The Arm & Hammer Connection. We wore matching suits and had black and silver capes with an Arm & Hammer logo on the back.
- Titles Held: I held the Florida Singles Championship Belt. Natasha The Hatchet Lady and I held the NWA Tag Team Belts in '79 and '80. We also held the World Tag Team Belts which we won in Lagos, Nigeria at a world tournament. Tracy and I also held the World Tag Team Belts.
- Biggest Win: All my wins were big! But I think winning the Tag Belts with Natasha at the World Tournament was my biggest thrill.
- Worst Loss: I hated losing any match...but having Ella Waldeck clean my clock was the most humiliating.
- Favorite Type of Match: I loved tag matches...especially mixed tags. I did a lot of those with my husband, Billy Blue River.
- Favorite Moves/Holds: I liked applying the short arm scissors and step-over toe hold.
- Finisher: Any thing or any way that I could win a match was fine with me!
- Biggest Allies: I guess I could name a lot...but I really admire the ladies like Ella Waldeck, Moolah, Mae Young, Natasha, Tracy Richards and Peggy Patterson. I could go on and on. These girls are true lady wrestlers.
- Toughest Opponents: All my opponents were tough, but I would have to say Judy Martin, Moolah and Ella Waldeck were the toughest. The girls that are starting in the business now couldn't hold a candle to these ladies.
- Career Highlight: Other than the titles I have won, I would have to say that being honored at the Ladies International Wrestling Association and The Cauliflower Alley Club were highlights of my career.
- Favorite Wrestlers: I would have to say my husband is one of my favorites! But also, I would say Rick Flair and Moolah. These are the people that made wrestling.
- What I Liked Most: I loved the competition and the traveling. I made so many friends in and out of the ring.
- What I Liked Least: I loved the business...but I wish we could have made the money that they make now! Still, I don't regret one minute of it.
Beverly Shade's Personal Notes...
I met my husband in Tampa in 1968. At that time, he was promoting wrestling in St. Petersburg, FL. After we were married, we promoted all over Florida and Georgia. He wrestled as Billy Blue River.....I had the chance to wrestle overseas a lot. Places like Japan, Canada, Thailand, Nigeria and the Caribbean Islands.....I retired in 1989.....My husband still works his job in the container business, and we're looking forward to retiring in a few years.....I love sports such as football and Nascar Racing, and I still watch wrestling on TV!.....I have two sons and one grandson. I love to spend as much time with them as I can. They live in Tampa, so don't get to see them as often as I would like.....I also enjoy going to wrestling reunions when I can. It is great to see all my old friends!.....I still work at times as a consultant for my husband's company. It keeps me in touch with people, and I like that.
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"It gives me great pleasure to converse with the aged. They have been over the road that all of us must travel and know where it is rough and difficult, and where it is level and easy." -- Plato