October 24, 2003
By BILL KAUFMANN- Calgary Sun
Flanked by a bust, bouquets of flowers and photos of the wrestling icon, Hart's cremated remains were cradled in a cherry wood box later buried at Eden Brook Memorial Gardens in a plot with his wife Helen, who died two years ago.
The renowned wrestling technician and promoter was described as the quintessential Albertan by Premier Ralph Klein.
"He had the drive, energy and ambition but he balanced those qualities with fairness, compassion and a more than healthy sense of humour," said Klein.
In his eulogy, Hart's son, Bret "The Hitman" often had the congregation in stitches, recalling how his dad once apprehended a teen trying to steal a family car.
Instead of turning him in, Bret said, his father took the youth into the Hart home's famous wrestling "dungeon and stretched him out," before alerting the teen's parents.
His father's appetite for the sport was insatiable, right up until his death, added Bret.
"If he was in bed at four in the morning and I said 'I've got two Chippendale dancers down in the kitchen dying to learn wrestling,' he couldn't get his pants on quickly enough,'" said Bret.
World Wrestling Entertainment Chairman Vince McMahon lauded Hart as an industry trailblazer.
"(Without Hart) so many of our fans all over the world would have missed out on many precious moments," said McMahon.
WWE superstar Chris Benoit, who trained under Hart, said Stu's impact went far beyond the ring.