Renowned American catch and carnival wrestler Dick Cardinal passed away on 24 December 2020, Scientific Wrestling has confirmed via Cardinal's son-in-law, Gary Goodman.
Born in 1927, Cardinal was 93 years old. Dave Meltzer noted on today's episode of Wrestling Observer Radio that Dick was thought to be the oldest living pro wrestler in America at the time of his passing.
Described as a grappler who was more famous among his fellow wrestlers than an outright wrestling superstar, Cardinal worked primarily on the carnival scene around the USA's Pacific Northwest area. Meltzer describes him as a "take-on-all-comers kinda guy," stating that he was brought in with the idea being that at 5'7" and 180lbs, people would think they could beat him, only for the submission expect to outfox them.
Cardinal would do this several times a day at fayres, facing off against all kinds of local challengers. He never became a truly big name in pro wrestling but was celebrated by his peers throughout the '50s and '60s.
A traditional Catch wrestling hooker who wrestled in competitive matches on top of stints with groups like the National Wrestling Alliance, Cardinal was also a revered amateur wrestling coach at North Lakewood School District in Washington.
Our thoughts, prayers, and best wishes go out to Cardinal's family at what must be a difficult time.