SLAM! Wrestling Canadian Hall of Fame: Frank Valois
REAL NAME: M. Frank Valois
BORN: December 7 1921 in Montreal, Quebec
DIED: December 31, 1998
AKA: The Red Mask
Frank Valois was both a successful wrestler and promoter around Montreal for more than four decades.
He started wrestling at 18, and lasted until he was 56 -- an amazing 38 years in the ring.
After retiring from the action, he got involved with the Montreal promotion, and was responsible for the French TV show Les Étoiles
de la Lutte in the 80s.
Besides his wrestling and promotion, his biggest claim to fame -- literally -- was getting Andre the Giant involved with pro wrestling, and was his business manager for first five years of Andre's career.
Valois also made numerous movies in France.
He died on New Year's Eve 1998 in Ste-Adele, Quebec.
Thank you letter
My name is Francoise Valois, I am Frank's youngest child. Most of you
know of my father as a real dirty, low-down wrestler. But what some of
you do not know is that Frank Valois was one of the few wrestlers who
was respected by both the wrestlers, heels and babyfaces alike and most
of all the promoters.
He never showed up late for a match, sick or not. He always gave is
150%. My dad believed that you gave back what you got. You were
treated right so you treated others right. I remember asking him once,
why when people threw things like beer or cigarette butts at him, that
he did not retaliate and he said why. These people paid to see me
wrestle and this is their way of showing that I did a good job, why
My father was one of the most honest people I will ever have the good
fortune to know. He was always there with a helping hand, whether for
family or even total strangers.
I know that he loved is work and was proud of what he achieved. He once
said. 'Talk nice or bad about me, I don't care, as long as you talk
I'm sure he would be very happy to hear all the wonderful things people
are saying about him. One thing though, I'm sure he would be even
happier if he knew that people did not forget the older wrestlers, the
REAL WRESTLERS, and not just those made up clowns, who call themselves
wrestlers today. These guys fall out of the ring onto mattresses, not
cement floors (too hard for them), they take planes to get to their
matches (driving is to long and boring for them). These guys have to be
paid thousands of dollars just to show up a venue, and if there are not
enough people in the stands, they only give 50%. They should remember
that it is the fans who pay their salaries.
Thank you on behalf of my sister Michele and I for the genuine
sympathy, we received upon Daddy's death.
I am Frank Valois' granddaughter.
I am so proud that he is remembered for what he truly was. He was one of
the best. He was a true wrestler at heart. Even after he retired he
still talked about how he felt a rush when he stepped on the ring. He
wasn't the kind of wrestler that only played for money. He played for
the people. He was sort of a hero in a way. Maybe people don't
understand but he cared about the family more then anything in the
world. He kept us together. He would bring us along on his trips or to
matches. He will always be remembered in our hearts as a hero and I hope
he will be remembered as a hero for other people who met him or just
caught a glimpse of him on the street. I am proud to say he was a
Frank Valois gave Québec wrestlers another chance
after the fall of the Grand Prix Wrestling in the70's
by regrouping them, and afterwards promoting them
in a famous French wrestling show called "Les Etoiles
de la Lutte" in the 80's. The former Paul Sauvé Arena, as well as the
legendary Forum, relived these
famous wrestling years with top quality bouts and
excellent promotions. Unfortunately, the coming of
the WWF wasted all that. But Valois gave dignity back
to a sport denied after so much controversy...
Claude Leduc, Montréal
What a difference a couple of decades make. I remember back in the '70's
tuning into Les Etoiles de La Lutte, and Les As De La Lute on TVA on French
TV, and Grand Prix Wrestling on English television. Talk about great
wrestling. The matches were so exciting. Wrestlers would come to Montreal
from all over North America. I even remember Black Jack Mulligan chasing me
down Close street, just in back of the Montreal forum. Or the night that
Rick Flair met Raymond Rougeau at the forum. What a match. Ray was so
frustrated at not being able to beat the great Rick Flair. It was an
exciting match. Or the classic Joe, and Paul Leduc matches as a tag team.
I guess I speak for many frustrated wrestling fans in saying that it would
be nice to see wrestling come back to this state, where wrestling counted
for something. We have the likes of Bob "Legs" Langevin, Gino Brito, and of
course the late Frank Valois for providing us with so many years of great