The heavyweights in the professional wrestling industry paid tribute to WWE Hall of Famer Pat Patterson, who passed away at age 79. Patterson, regarded as one of the greatest brains in professional wrestling, worked pretty much with everyone in this business and leaves a legacy behind him that will never be forgotten.
“I can not express how crushed I feel right now with the loss of Pat Patterson,” wrote Shane McMahon. “A true member of my family, mentor and dear friend. I love you Pat. God speed.”
His sister Stephanie added, “I’m deeply grateful to have grown up with @wwe Hall of Famer, the first-ever Intercontinental Champion, the father of the #RoyalRumble and the first openly gay wrestler of his generation. Thank you for teaching me how to not take it all so seriously.”
Triple H spent a considerable amount of time backstage with Pat and said that no words can describe what he gave to the business. “His body as an in-ring performer, his mind as a storyteller, and his spirit as a beloved member of our large @WWE family. I will miss him for so many reasons… it’s never goodbye, it’s see ya down the road. Love you, Pat,” Triple H wrote.
The Rock worked with Patterson countless times in laying out some of the biggest matches and was also the one who called Vince to tell him to check him out when he was starting in the business. “Vince flew me to RAW a few weeks later and I had my first match EVER in Corpus Christie, Texas. The rest is history and years later, here I am writing this post,” The Rock said. “Love you, Pat. And THANK YOU. I’ll see you down the road.”
Hulk Hogan said that it was a tough morning hearing the shocking news about Pat. “Pat and Buddy Colt let me ride with them when I had my first match, the ribbing started that day and went on until now, love you my brother,” Hogan wrote.
John Cena is also someone who worked close with Patterson during his busy WWE run years ago and said Pat lived life as it should be lived, with passion, love and purpose. “He helped so many and always entertained with a story or joke. He will live on in my life always. Love you Patrick.”
As a family friend for many decades, Roman Reigns said that Patterson was always invested in his success, calling his death a major loss for the WWE family. “Brilliant mind for the business and always ready to make a joke … at your expense! Rest In Peace, Pat. God bless.”
HBK Shawn Michaels is also someone who grew up working with Pat and wrote that few could speak the art of our industry into existence. “Pat spoke to me, taught me so much, and helped me see what was really possible to achieve in my career. God bless you, Pat. Rest In Peace,” Michaels wrote.
Two-time Hall of Famer Ric Flair described Patterson as a great wrestler, a fabulous mind, caring and thoughtful with always a smile on his face. “The last thing I can remember him saying to me is ‘She is so damn good Ricky, are you sure she is your daughter?’ RIP Pat,” Flair wrote. His daughter Charlotte added that Pat was a staple and always came to NXT and loved the women’s matches.
Fellow female wrestlers such as Bayley and Natalya also chimed in, with Bayley saying he always sat in or near Gorilla and not only watched the shows, but made sure to compliment them on their way back. “But I’ll always remember Pat most for coming to Xmas karaoke in NXT to sing the same song every year! Always the main event. He will be missed.”
Natalya wrote that Pat knew WWE was his home away from home and a place where he felt completely accepted and truly loved. “Someone like Pat made all the difference because he wasn’t afraid to be himself and he made no apologies for it. Pat did it his way. Rest in power, Pat,” Natalya wrote.
Mick Foley wrote that he loved Patterson and could listen to his stories for hours, describing him as one of the all-time great wrestlers, one of the best minds in the business, and a dear friend.
Eric Bischoff spoke about how coming into WWE in 2002 was a unique situation and Pat was the first to go out of his way to genuinely make him feel at home. “We shared many hours, stories, and yes a cocktail or 2. RIP Pat. You did it your way,” Bischoff wrote.
Tributes also came from those in All Elite Wrestling who used to work with Patterson during their WWE days.
Cody Rhodes said Pat was a good man and in all the conversations he had with him there was an underlying thread, and that was the brotherhood/sisterhood throughout the locker room and how much they were a team. “Loved life and lived it hard. He was incredibly loved and will be missed,” Cody wrote, adding a photo of Patterson with his mother.
“Saddened to learn of Pat Patterson’s passing this morning. Pat was a true visionary when it came to the psychology behind pro wrestling,” Matt Hardy wrote. “He also evolved with an open mind as times & styles changed. I always looked forward to Pat’s karaoke gatherings after Montreal.”
Jim Ross said that Patterson was a true legend of the pro wrestling business and a wonderful mentor who taught him so much.
Taz said he was sorry to hear the sad news of Pat Patterson passing away. “Pat was a really funny guy…non stop smiling & busting chops. No doubt one of the greatest finish men in the history of the business,” he added.
Miro, the man formerly known as Rusev, kept it short saying that karaoke night with Pat Patterson in Belgium will forever be a highlight of his, probably not saying much because of the shenanigans that went down that night.