My family, @saronasnukawwe gave me this amazing pic she took of her dad only a few short months ago. I immediately got choked up when I first saw this as she told me he sat there in this chair for hours and just watched his old wrestling promos and matches... in complete silence. Never said a word, just watched and reflected. Got choked up over the thought of what must've been going thru his mind in these hours watching himself... pride, joy, regret, satisfaction, pain, love. I wondered if at any point he sat here wishing he could do it all over again. Or, if he sat here completely at peace with his incredible, inspiring, wildly successful and at times extremely complicated life he's lived.
Well before there was WrestleManias, PPV's, big money guaranteed contracts, the internet or pro wrestling being coined, "sports entertainment", it's hard to articulate how "on fire" this man was in the early 80's and how much he impacted and electrified the wrestling business' bottom line. His wrestling promos had a quiet intensity that made you believe every word that came out of his mouth and you just knew that you had to run down to Madison Square Garden and buy your tickets because he was going to electrify that night. Another Garden sell out.
I grew up with this man as our families lived together in Hawaii and North Carolina. His children Jimmy Jr, Liana, Sarona and Ata all idolized him, as did I. Awesome memories. To the world, he was known as the iconic Jimmy "Superfly" Snuka but to me he was and will always be, simply.. uncle.
Rest in peace, uncle. Fly high bruddah..now you have real wings.