WWC And Stampede Wrestling Star Hercules Ayala Passes Away At The Age Of 69

Hercules Ayala, one of Puerto Rico's top wrestling stars from the 1980s, has died due to heart issues. He was 69.

The Cauliflower Alley Club broke the news that Ayala passed away on January 23. Ayala wrestled all over the world winning a number of titles, but made his home wrestling for Puerto Rico's World Wrestling Council promotion throughout multiple decades and for Stu Hart's Stampede Wrestling for almost a decade.

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Born Ruben Cruz in the city of Bayamon, Puerto Rico, Ayala began wrestling in the 1970s, competing in the United States for a number of promotions, including a brief run in the World Wide Wrestling Federation (WWWF). Ayala then traveled to Canada and competed in Stampede Wrestling, wrestling the likes of Bret Hart, Jake Roberts and Jim Neidhart. Ayala even enjoyed a brief time as Stampede Wrestling International Tag Team Championship alongside Neidhart. Ayala also spent time wrestling in New Japan Pro Wrestling.

Competing in Puerto Rico's WWC promotion, Ayala is perhaps best known for his lengthy feud with Carlos Colon in the late 1980s where the two battled for the WWC Universal Championship. Ayala held the Universal title three times, the WWC Carribean Heavyweight title twice and the WWC Puerto Rico Championship five times.

While in Puerto Rico, Ayala wrestled a number of wrestling greats, including Randy Savage, Nikita Koloff, Greg Valentine and even Ric Flair for the NWA World Heavyweight Championship.

Fightful would like to extend our condolences to the family, friends, and fans of Ruben Cruz.

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