WWE legend Paul Orndorff died at the age of 71 on Monday after battling multiple health issues. One of the things Orndorff apparently dealt with is brain damage from professional wrestling, which is something his son, Travis, vented about before his death. On Instagram, Travis posted a photo of one of Orndorff's old notebooks and showed the issues he was having.
"Going through dads old notebooks. If you can’t read it, it says 'son, I think,'" Travis wrote. "I haven’t had that phone number since 2005. I hope the world will start to take notice of the brain damage and the consequences of this lifestyle. I do not blame the WWE or Vince McMahon as you might think. No one knew this would happen. But we can do something now."
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Travis announced the death of his father shortly after his post about brain damage. "Most of you will remember him for his physique," he wrote. "Many will remember his intensity. But if I could only get you to understand and see his heart. He will always be Pop, Paw Paw, and Daddy at home. And as much as many of you hated him as a wrestler, he absolutely loved you for it. He was an amazing father that showed me more love than I ever deserved. I love you Daddy."
There were a number of current and former WWE Superstars who paid tribute to Orndorff. "I’m so sorry to learn of the passing of Paul Orndorff," Mick Foley wrote on Twitter, per Wrestling Inc. "As a fan, I loved watching him. As a wrestler, I loved working with him. He brought intensity and believability to every match and promo. Truly one of the all-time greats."
“Paul Orndorff was the first wrestler I hated [and] feared as a child," WWE Hall of Famer Edge wrote. "I was at the Big Event in Toronto. Changed my life. Years later the morning before WrestleMania 21, I trained with him and Hulk. I was a little kid again. One of my fondest memories. Thank you for all of them Paul.”
Orndorff started his career in 1976 and spent time in WWE, WCW, SMW, Mid-South, the NWA, NJPW and many other promotions. He was part of the main event at the first WrestleMania, teaming up with "Rowdy" Roddy Piper to face Hulk Hogan and Mr. T. Orndorff was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2005.