The news of the death of Bruno Sammartino made headlines around the world with major news outlets covering the story including from his native country of Italy.
The Pittsburgh Steelers, the Penguins and the mayor of Pittsburgh also sent in their condolences via messages on Twitter and the Mayor website.
“The Pittsburgh Steelers organization is deeply saddened by the passing of the great Bruno Sammartino. Bruno was truly a world-renowned champion who never lost his identify of a true Pittsburgh, always placing his family and friends ahead of any personal accomplishments. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his wife, Carol, and sons David, Danny and Darryl,” a statement from Steelers General Manager Kevin Colbert read.
The Pittsburgh Penguins also issued a small statement through their social media, writing, “We are saddened to learn of the passing of Pittsburgh wrestling legend Bruno Sammartino. Our thoughts are with his family, friends, and the Pittsburgh sports community.”
The Mayor of Pittsburgh William Peduto released a statement on the pittsburghpa.gov official website which read, “Bruno Sammartino was one of the greatest ambassadors the city of Pittsburgh ever had. Like so many of us, his immigrant family moved here to build a new life, and through his uncommon strength and surprising grace he embodied the spirit of Pittsburgh on the world stage. Some of the fondest memories of my childhood are of sitting in the basement with my grandfather on Saturday afternoons and watching Bruno wrestle. They both came from the same part of Italy, and when my grandfather – who was five-foot-eight – would watch Bruno wrestle he became six-feet-ten. I consider it a great personal honor that Bruno and I later became friends. I join all other Pittsburgh residents in saying ‘Thank you, Bruno’ and we will miss you.”
Meanwhile, the Madison Square Garden Twitter account also paid tribute to the former WWWF champion and had an in-memoriam graphic yesterday on the big screen. “Today is a sad day for wrestling and sports fans. Simply put, Bruno Sammartino was one of the biggest stars in the long and storied history of Madison Square Garden, a legend in every way. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family today and always,” the tweet said.