Guest Author - Vance Rowe
Bruiser Brody, who’s real name is Frank Goodish, was a very well known wrestler in the 70’s and 80’s until his tragic death in 1988. Bruiser Brody was wrestling for the World Wrestling Council in Puerto Rico when he was allegedly murdered by a wrestling superstar there in Jose Huertas Gonzalez, who went by the moniker of Invader I. There are conflicting stories about how the alleged murder took place. Jose Gonzales claimed it was self defense as he allegedly asked Brody to come into the shower area with him to discuss some business. Bruiser Brody was scheduled to wrestle Abdullah the Butcher that night on a card. When Brody followed him in, they talked and then a scuffle broke out and Jose Gonzales allegedly stabbed Brody to death. There was talk that Gonzales was upset with Brody because of his failure to let other wrestlers shine in matches against him and Gonzales was upset because he believed that Bruiser Brody was trying to gain control of the company and in fact it was later known that Brody was investing money into the company. However, it is said that the wrestlers there that night dispute the rumor that Gonzales walked into the locker room with a small knife and waited to attack Brody.
However, one wrestler who said he was there when the attack happened and he said that Jose Gonzales was hiding in the shower area and when Bruiser Brody ducked his head to enter the area, Gonzales was said to have grabbed Bruiser Brody by the hair, pull him down a bit and stabbed him repeatedly in the stomach. Jose Gonzales was tried for the murder but was subsequently acquitted by the jury on the grounds that it was indeed self defense. The wrestling world as well as the fans may never know the truth of the events that unfolded that day, but one thing is for sure and that is that professional wrestling lost one of the best on July 17th, 1988 and at the age of 42, still had a few good years in him in the squared circle.
Frank Goodish was born in 1946 and was married twice. His first marriage lasted only about two years but his second marriage lasted until his untimely, horrific death. He had one son with her as well. Frank Goodish wrestled under different names and has probably wrestled for more companies and in more places than any other wrestler at that time and quite possibly, even today. He was loved in Japan but not liked by too many wrestlers here because there were a lot of times when, as I mentioned previously, he would put other wrestlers over. Even so, he wrestled for the NWA, the AWA, and the WWWF where he had some great battles with Bruno Sammartino and Ivan Putski in the late 70’s.
His favorite tag team partner was Stan “The Lariat” Hansen and they were a dominant tag team with different, yet, similar styles of brawling.
Bruiser Brody received a lot of posthumous awards including one from the wrestling magazine, Pro Wrestling Illustrated and has been nominated into several different Hall of Fames including the St. Louis Pro Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2007. I wonder when, if ever, the WWE will induct him into their self proclaimed illustrious Hall of Fame.
Bruiser Brody is gone and he is missed and he will never be forgotten by any wrestler or wrestling fan that knew or watched him personally and professionally.