Jerry Jarrett, a legendary pro wrestling promoter and the father of WWE Hall of Famer Jeff Jarrett, has died, the company announced on Tuesday. He was 80.
Jarrett started his in-ring career in the National Wrestling Alliance Mid-America territory and won multiple tag-team championships before he hung up his boots and launched the Continental Wrestling Association with Jerry “The King” Lawler in 1977. About 11 years later, the promotion merged with World Class Championship Wrestling and the United States Wrestling Association was formed.
Jarrett would sell the controlling ownership to the United States Wrestling Association to Lawler in 1997. However, the promotion would become a casualty of the “Monday Night Wars” between WWE and World Championship Wrestling and fall to the wayside.
Jarrett’s son, Jeff, would become a mid-level star in WWE and move to WCW and become a main event player in the latter days of that company. When WCW was bought by WWE, the Jarretts would form their own company called NWA-TNA, which would later be called Total Nonstop Wrestling and later Impact Wrestling.
Jarrett would later sell his stake of the company to Panda Energy and would leave by 2005 over a dispute about direction. The company would help produce future WWE stars like A.J. Styles, Xavier Woods and Bobby Roode. All Elite Wrestling stars like Samoa Joe, Christopher Daniels and the Young Bucks were among those who wrestled there as well.
Tributes around the wrestling world began to pour in for the Jarrett family.
Jarrett has three sons Jerry Jr., Jeff and Jason and one daughter, Jennifer.