Iron Sheik Cause of Death, Obituary – Hossein Khosrow Ali Vaziri, the man known to millions of wrestling fans as The Iron Sheik, has died. He was 81. The news was announced through Vaziri’s official Twitter account. “Today, we gather with heavy hearts to bid farewell to a true legend, a force of nature and an iconic figure who left an incredible mark on the world of professional wrestling,” reads Wednesday’s Tweet. “It is with great sadness that we share the news of the passing of The Iron Sheik, but we also take solace unknowing that he departed this world peacefully, leaving behind a legacy that will endure for generations to come.”
The WWE also expressed its condolences writing, “WWE is saddened to learn that Hossein Khosrow Ali Vaziri, known the world over as WWE Hall of Famer The Iron Sheik, passed away on Wednesday, June 7, at age 81. WWE extends its condolences to The Iron Sheik’s family, friends and fans.” Sheik was born in Iran in 1942 and was known by fans as one of the biggest heels to ever step foot in the ring. He gained popularity in 1979, catching the eye the
World Wrestling Federation (WWF) when he won the first-ever Battle Royal at Madison Square Garden in New York City. This earned him the chance to face then-champion Bob Backlund, who ultimately pinned him later that evening in a half-hour match. In 1983, Sheik took on Backlund in a rematch and officially became the WWF World Heavyweight Champion. The Iron Sheik was famously one of Hulk Hogan’s first rivals.
Hogan’s victory against Sheik won him the belt and officially gave rise to “Hulkamania.” In 2005, Sheik was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame by Sgt. Slaughter, one of his longtime rivals and former partner. He is survived by his wife of 47 years, Caryl, his two daughters and his five grandchildren.