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   August 27, 2014



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COMMENT





Beefcake still cuttin' and struttin'
By CALEB SMITH - SLAM! Wrestling


A recent shot of Brutus Beefcake, complete with mini-Bruti and shears.

Brutus Beefcake has been blessed with an interesting and eventful career. He stared in seven of the first nine Wrestlemanias. At SummerSlam, he was in the famous match that saw Beefcake and WWE champion Hulk Hogan take on the Hulkster's movie nemesis Zeus and the Randy "Macho Man" Savage. These events and more have helped to make him into a pop culture celebrity.

Fans of 1980s wrestling remember Brutus Beefcake (Ed Leslie) for the array of characters he played in the ring. The most popular role he took on was that of "The Barber."

Beefcake would knock his opponents out with a sleeper hold and then go about cutting the bad guy's hair. Fans around the world loved the haircuts and they continue to enjoy him today. "It is so great that people are still excited about my name," said Beefcake. "I love that I have made a difference to those fans and touched their lives."

"The Barber" is still cuttin' and struttin' for his fans today. He attends charity events, talks to youth groups and helps to raise money for local firefighter and police youth organizations in the Clearwater, Florida area. "I just want to give back," stated Beefcake. "I want to pass on lessons that I learned. Stay in school and stay away from drugs."

One event Beefcake will be attending is the Niagara Falls Sports Expo on Saturday, March 29th at the Scotiabank Convention Centre in Niagara Falls, Ontario, with other sports celebrities such as Pete Rose and Johnny Bower.


"I like to talk one on one to the fans," related the 56-year-old Beefcake. "The fans made everything possible for me to be a celebrity."

"In the world of professional wrestling, Brutus "The Barber" Beefcake is one of the most popular names from the '80s era. He's a household name," said Chris Dabrowski, show manager for the Niagara Falls Sports Expo. "When he's scheduled for an event like this one, he takes the time to interact with each and every one of his fans. I've had the pleasure to work with him numerous times over the past five years."

Meeting sports celebrities is nothing new for Beefcake. He has met many professional athletes through his wrestling days. One person he became friends with is hulking Bruins defenceman Zdeno Chara whom he met while living in Boston. "Chara invited my daughter and I down to the arena to go in the Boston Bruins dressing room and then watch a game," recounted Beefcake. "When the Bruins won the Stanley Cup we got to get our pictures taken with it."

When asked about meeting fans today, he loves that the kids who used to watch him in the 1980s have grown up and bring their children to see him. "These fans tell their kids about my hair cutting and ring memories. It is really special," said Beefcake.

When looking back on his career he pointed to the third Wrestlemania as a favourite moment. "I couldn't believe all of those people in the Silverdome," said Beefcake who teamed with Greg "The Hammer" Valentine to defeat the Rougeau Brothers. "Those people cheering just shook the building. It was so exciting that the noise almost took my heart out of my chest."

These days Beefcake only takes out his sheers on the occasional weekend. Instead he is happy to spend his time with his wife relaxing on the beach. "After 37 years on the road I like sleeping in my own bed," said Beefcake. "I spent so many years by myself at hotels or restaurants. Now I have a great wife and I can be with her."

After the limelight and main events have passed, Brutus Beefcake has found peace and happiness outside of the ring. "I love that my life has slowed down," said Beefcake. "I was fortunate to have the great career that I did. I don't miss it."

RELATED LINKS

  • Brutus "The Barber" Beefcake story archive
  • Niagara Falls Sports Expo
  • Facebook: Edward H. Leslie

    Caleb Smith did some cuttin' and struttin' but thankfully his wife took the scissors away from him. If you go to the Niagara Falls Sports Expo you could meet SLAM! Wrestling's producer Greg Oliver and perhaps buy his new book Don't Call Me Goon.