Antonio Inoki Passes Away At 79 – Yahoo Japan reports that the legendary Antonio Inoki has died at age 79.
Per a translation of the report: “Former professional wrestler Antonio Inoki (real name Kanji Inoki), who served two terms as a member of the House of Councilors, died at his home on the 1st. he was 79 years old. Born in Yokohama City.”
Born Kanji Inoki, he is one of the biggest names in the history of Japanese wrestling and a major name in the entire culture. He is considered one of the biggest names ever in the history of pro wrestling.
He began his wrestling career in 1972 when he founded New Japan Pro Wrestling. He remained as the owner of the promotion until 2005 when he sold his controlling shares to Yuke’s video game company. In 2007, he founded the Inoki Genome Federation.
Inoki entered politics in 1989 and was elected to the Japanese House of Councillors. He served from 1989 until 1995 and again from 2013 until 2019.
Inoki’s legacy is far reaching. He trained several wrestlers including Akira Maeda, Bad News Allen, the first Tiger Mask, Keiji Muto, Riki Choshu, Shinsuke Nakamura, Tatsumi Fujinami, Rocky Romero, and several other major names.
Inoki had been battling health issues in recent years.
Antonio Inoki Passes Away At 79