Former WWE wrestler Ivan “The Russian Bear”Koloff died Saturday after a battle with liver cancer. He was 74.
“WWE is saddened to learn that Ivan Koloff, best known to the WWE Universe as one of Bruno Sammartino’s most bitter rivals, has passed away at age 74,” the company said in a statement. “WWE extends its condolences to Ivan Koloff’s family, friends and fans.”
Koloff’s death came one day after the death of fellow WWE star George “The Animal” Steele, who died Friday because of kidney failure.
Koloff was born Oreal Perras in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. He began wrestling professionally in the 1960’s as an Irish villain named Red McNulty. After a few years, he began wrestling as Ivan Koloff and was billed as being from Ukraine.