Major Mexican promotion AAA are in mourning following the death of company director Joaquín Roldán in the early hours of Saturday morning.
Roldán's name may not be immediately familiar to wrestling fans globally, but he was one of the most important figures in lucha libre, having led AAA for the past ten-and-a-half years.
The husband of AAA founder Antonio Peña's sister Marisela, Roldán first started working for the CMLL offshoot as a laywer, before taking over company operations following Peña's sudden death in 2006. Whilst it was commonly believed that it was in fact Marisela who had inherited her brother's promotion, Mexican society dictated a man run the company. Nevertheless, the whole family became AAA's public face, including son Dorian.
Though the organisation was expected to collapse in the wake of Peña's death, Roldán and family managed to keep it afloat, even helping it expand into North America thanks to their involvement in Lucha Underground. In recent times however, political uncertainty behind the scenes and the slump in the Mexican peso brought on by trade uncertainty with the US have since seen the company enter choppy waters.
For several years after assuming the helm of AAA, Roldán also appeared as an on-screen authority figure, predominantly feuding with his son in a Latin American spin on the McMahons, as well as AAA mainstay Konnan. The latter's departure precipitated a gradual decline in his television work.
There had been hints of ongoing health concerns. Though Roldán and his wife were regular fixtures in the front row of AAA events, he had become a rare sight in the past few months. At the Triplemanía XXIV event in August, the director was inducted into AAA's Hall of Fame in a move criticised at the time, but one which now makes perfect sense in the context of a lengthy terminal illness. Plantilla Deportivo today confirmed that he had died of cancer.
Roldán's body is set to be transferred to Capilla de Gayosso in Felix Cuevas, where his family are holding a wake.