Wrestling legend Dynamite Kid has died, the WWE confirmed.
The British ring phenom, whose real name was Tommy Billington, was one half of the British Bulldogs along with his cousin, Davey Boy Smith.
He died on December 5, his 60th birthday, reports Fox News.
Billington’s nephew, Davey Boy Smith Jr, tweeted, “It deeply saddens me to announce the passing of Tom Billington the ‘Dynamite Kid.’ I was really happy and glad I got to see Dynamite one last time last June in the UK.
“Dynamite was certainly an inspiration to myself and many others and really revolutionised professional Wrestling as we now [sic] it today. He flew high, and gave it his all every match. Thanks for everything and sad to have lost another family member. Rest In Peace Dyno.”
Wrestling trainer Marty Jones added his condolences.
“It’s with great sadness I have to inform you all that The ‘Dynamite Kid’ Tom Billington on his birthday has passed away,” he wrote. “A true British ambassador for wrestling worldwide. RIP ‘Kid’. Condolences to Mark and his family.”
Dynamite Kid dead at 60
Billington began wrestling when he was 13 years old and toured Britain by the time he was just 16. He began his career with Stampede Wrestling in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, when he was 20, the Daily Mail reported.
Billington worked in Japan before signing with the World Wrestling Federation as one half of the British Bulldogs in 1984.
He broke his back in the ring in a 1986 match at Madison Square Garden, nearly ending his career — but he came back to the WWF, where he stayed until 1988.
He then signed with Stampede Wrestling and worked in Japan.
Billington’s final match was in October 1996, when The Sun reported his body “degenerated” and he suffered a seizure at the airport the following day.
It deeply saddens me to announce the passing of Tom Billington the “Dynamite Kid.” 😭😢🙏I was really happy and glad I got to see Dynamite one last time last June in the UK. 🇬🇧 ❤️🙏. Dynamite was certainly an inspiration to myself and many others and really revolutionized pic.twitter.com/req7CWTdxm
— Davey Boy Smith Jr. (@DBSmithjr) December 5, 2018
In 1997, Billington lost the use of his left leg and was relegated to a wheelchair for the rest of his life.
He also reportedly suffered from several heart problems and had a stroke in 2013.
In late 2016, a visibly unhealthy Billington appeared in a documentary and his wife, Dot, launched a GoFundMe to help pay his medical bills.
The Dynamite Kid is survived by wife Dot, daughters Browyne and Amaris and son Marek.
Originally published as WWE legend Dynamite Kid dead at 60