Gory Guerrero

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Gory Guerrero
Gory Guerrero.jpg
Birth name Salvador Guerrero Quesada
Born (1921-01-11)January 11, 1921[1]
Ray, Arizona[1]
Died April 18, 1990(1990-04-18) (aged 69)
El Paso, Texas
Professional wrestling career
Ring name(s)

Joe Morgan
Gory Guerrero

1.75 m (5 ft 9 in)
Billed weight 95 kg (209 lb)
Trained by Diablo Velasco[1]
Indio Mejía[1]
Debut September 14, 1937[1]
Retired April 18, 1990[citation needed]
This name uses Spanish naming customs: the first or paternal family name is Guerrero and the second or maternal family name is Quesada.

Salvador Guerrero Quesada[1] (January 11, 1921 – April 18, 1990), better known as Gory Guerrero, was one of the premier Hispanic professional wrestlers in the early days of Lucha Libre when most wrestlers were imported from outside of Mexico. He wrestled primarily in Empresa Mexicana de la Lucha Libre (EMLL) between the 1940s and 1960s. He was also the patriarch of the Guerrero wrestling family.

Professional wrestling career[edit]

In Mexico, Guerrero joined a gym with the intention to learn to box, but instead learned lucha libre from Diablo Velasco and El Indio Mejía.[1] He wrestled his first professional wrestling match on September 14, 1937, jobbing to El Rojo.[1] He began his career in Mexico working under the ring name Joe Morgan, but later changed his name to Gory Guerrero—a reference to his bloody matches.[2]

He made his debut for the Mexico City promotion Empresa Mexicana de la Lucha Libre (EMLL) in 1943 and was named "Rookie of the Year" later that year.[2] In 1945, he briefly held the Mexican National Welterweight Championship.[2] Several months later, he won the Mexican National Middleweight Championship, which he held for approximately one year.[2] Guerrero and his brothers also feuded with Cavernario Galindo and his brothers.[2]

In the late 1940s, Guerrero began tag teaming with El Santo as the undefeated La Pareja Atómica (The Atomic Pair).[2] Guerrero also appeared in some of El Santo's films.[2]

He also feuded with Enrique Llanes and his tag team partner Tarzán López.[3] He defeated Lopez for the NWA Middleweight title. In 1954, he wrestled a championship match against NWA World Heavyweight Champion Lou Thesz but did not win the title.[2]

Guerrero broke away from EMLL in 1966 after refusing to drop the NWA World Light Heavyweight Championship to Ray Mendoza.[3] He worked as an independent in the mid-1960s.[3] He also began to branch out into booking and training with Dory Funk, Sr..[3] In addition, he helped run shows in NWA Hollywood Wrestling for two years, and later he booked shows for World Class Championship Wrestling.[4] With age his in-ring performing decreased until his ultimate retirement in the 1980s.

Guerrero is credited with the invention of La de a Caballo (Camel Clutch) and the Gory Special, a type of backbreaker.[3] He also invented the back to back stretch hold which has been modified into a facebuster move (Gory Bomb), a piledriver (Barry White Driver), a powerbomb (Stu Hart Special), a reverse STO (The Deal) or a neckbreaker/backbreaker (Widow's Peak).

Personal life[edit]

Guerrero was born in Ray, Arizona to a family of migrant workers.[1] He attended school in the United States until the age of nine when his mother died.[1] His family moved to Mexico, and Guerrero's father used his English language skills to work as an interpreter in Guadalajara.[1]

Guerrero's wife Herlinda was the sister of wrestler Enrique Llanes.[3] They married in 1947.[3] They had six children: four sons Chavo, Mando, Hector, Eddie, and two daughters, Mary and Linda.[3]

After retiring from active wrestling, Guerrero sold auto insurance. Guerrero would also open his home to aspiring wrestlers, training them in the backyard in an old ring. As of 2005, the ring was still in the family house's backyard.[4] Two weeks before his death, Guerrero's liver crashed and he developed cirrhosis due to hepatitis.[5]

In wrestling[edit]

  • Nicknames
    • El Ave de las Tempestades (Thunder Bird)[2]

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

  • Wrestling Observer Newsletter awards


1The NWA World Light Heavyweight Championship is no longer a championship that is sanctioned or acknowledge by the National Wrestling Alliance as a world title.
2The NWA World Welterweight Championship is no longer sanctioned or recognized by the NWA as a world title.
3This title would later be recognized by the NWA, though Guerrero's reign with it occurred prior to the formation of the National wrestling Alliance. The NWA World Middleweight Championship is also currently not sanctioned or recognized by the NWA as a world title.


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Guerrero, Eddie. Cheating Death, Stealing Life: The Eddie Guerrero Story, p. 5.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m Guerrero, Eddie. Cheating Death, Stealing Life: The Eddie Guerrero Story, p. 6–8.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Guerrero, Eddie. Cheating Death, Stealing Life: The Eddie Guerrero Story, p. 9–10.
  4. ^ a b Guerrero, Eddie. Cheating Death, Stealing Life: The Eddie Guerrero Story, p. 26–27.
  5. ^ Guerrero, Eddie. Cheating Death, Stealing Life: The Eddie Guerrero Story, p. 59.


  • Guerrero, Eddie (2005). Cheating Death, Stealing Life: The Eddie Guerrero Story. Simon and Schuster. ISBN 0-7434-9353-2. 

Further reading[edit]

  • "Lucha Libre: Conoce la historia de las leyendas de cuadrilátero". Gori Guerrero (1921 - 1990) (in Spanish) (Mexico). 42008. p. 27. Grandes Figuras de la Lucha Libre. 
  • Wrestling With God by Chad Bonham, 2001, ISBN 1-58919-935-9, pp. 125–138.

External links[edit]