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Little angel of wrestling
Miss Elizabeth was one of the most genuine ladies the business ever saw
By BRET HART - Calgary Sun


Miss Elizabeth

Miss Elizabeth was a flower among the weeds.

She died Thursday morning in Cobb County, Ga., of causes yet to be determined.

She was 42.

To wrestling fans, Liz is best remembered as the prim and proper manager/valet of her real-life husband, Randy "Macho Man" Savage.

Not to take anything away from Randy but I'm sure he'd agree Elizabeth's classy appeal had no small part in his rise to the top.

Away from the spotlight, the real Liz was very much like the character she played.

She was shy and quiet and her elegant grace was easy on the eyes.

She and Randy were great together and had already been married for years before their live-on-pay-per-view wedding at Summerslam '91.

Even though it was part of the storyline, it was obvious to anyone backstage the ceremony was very real to Liz, who looked at it as renewing their vows and was emotional and beaming.

About a year later, insiders in the wrestling world were shocked when Randy and Liz divorced. The fans found out a few years later when the split was presented as part of a storyline.

I remember envying Randy for being able to bring his wife on the road all the time but, in hindsight, it seems to me anyway, that never being out of each other's sight probably contributed to the demise of their fairy-tale romance more than anything else.

When my kids were young and I brought them on the road with me, Liz would often graciously offer to watch them while I had to work.

When my oldest daughter, Jade, now 20, was still in single digits, she idolized Liz and enjoyed getting all dolled up like her.

One thing that shouldn't be overlooked about Liz is that when the wrestling business slid into sleaze in the late '90s, she remained a lady.

She was more than deserving of the moniker First Lady of Wrestling -- which, in no small irony, was also the title given to my mother by fans and wrestlers alike.

Both my mother and Miss Elizabeth somehow managed to stay true to themselves, civilized and polished, sharp and articulate, even though they were constantly surrounded by ruffians and chaos.

I don't recall ever seeing Liz in a bad mood.

She was always courteous and polite and never ever developed a trace of a prima- donna attitude. She never walked around with her nose in the air thinking she was bigger than the wrestlers, even though for a time she was, unlike most of the women who came up after her.

When I arrived in WCW in December of 1997, I was pleasantly surprised to find Liz there, managing Lex Luger.

One of my last conversations with her was in the spring of 1999, shortly after my brother Owen died.

She sensed my heartache as she gently told me after watching me for all these years, she just wanted to thank me -- for what, I wasn't sure.

But she went on to say I was her favourite and, although she didn't pretend to be an expert, she said she'd seen with her own eyes how hard I'd worked -- for everybody in the dressing room -- year after year.

She said she wanted me to know how truly sorry she was things had turned out so dark for me at the end and I deserved so much better.

She gave me a sincere hug and, over the years, her kind praise has meant so much more to me than she will ever know.

Miss Elizabeth was my friend.

I loved her dearly and will miss her dearly. I only wish I'd have told her how very much she meant to me, too.

All those wrestlers in heaven will have to part and make way for the little angel of wrestling.

RELATED LINKS

  • Miss Elizabeth dies
  • Police release more details on Elizabeth's death
  • Cause of Miss Elizabeth's death still unknown
  • 'I feel almost like Cinderella': 1988 Miss Elizabeth interview
  • Bret Hart column: Little angel of wrestling
  • Lex Luger story archive