Another wrestling legend has left us too soon as word has broken that “Beautiful” Bobby Eaton has died. Eaton, who was particularly well known for his tag team work as a member of Jim Cornette’s Midnight Express, had been hospitalized in late July after suffering a bad fall, reportedly breaking several fingers and damaging his hip. It’s unclear if his passing is directly related to the incident, but his death has been confirmed by Eaton’s sister on Facebook.
“I never wanted to have to post this, but my Little Brother Beautiful Bobby Eaton passed away last night. When I find out all the details I will post them,” said Eaton’s sister, Debbie Eaton Lewis, in a public Facebook post. “Bobby was the kindest, loving person you would ever meet. I loved him so much and going to miss him. Please say a prayer for my Niece Taryn she found him. And she just lost her Mom a little over a Month ago.”
Robert Lee Eaton was born on Aug. 14, 1958, in Huntsville, Alabama. Growing up as a fan of pro wrestling, he first got involved in the business at the age of 13 by helping to set up wrestling rings for events in his hometown. He’d later start officially training to become a pro wrestler under the guidance of Tojo Yamamoto, and when he was only 17, Eaton wrestled his first match in 1976 for NWA Mid-America.
Eaton exceptionally took to tag team wrestling, and in 1978, he won his first Tag Team Championship in NWA Mid-America with Leapin’ Lanny Poffo as his partner. He then formed a tag team called The Jet Set with George Gulas and won the tag team titles an additional three times. During his four-decade career, he’d team up with many other notable names in the business, including Arn Anderson, Koko B. Ware, and Lord Steven Regal.
While competing in Mid-South Wrestling, Eaton joined his most well-known tag team as a part of the Midnight Express. Initially, he partnered up with Dennis Condry with Jim Cornette serving as their manager. As Condrey had been using the nickname “Lover Boy” Dennis, Eaton christened himself as “Beautiful” Bobby, and the name would stick for the rest of his career. After years of teaming with Condrey, Eaton would also team up with “Sweet” Stan Lane to win more tag team gold as the Midnight Express.
Over the years, Eaton had competed in many promotions like Mid-America Wrestling, Mid-South Wrestling, World Class Championship Wrestling, Jim Crockett Promotions, World Championship Wrestling, Smoky Mountain Wrestling, Extreme Championship Wrestling, and Total Nonstop Action. He wrestled his last match in 2015 against Ricky Morton, one half of the Rock ‘n’ Roll Express, culminating a feud between the two teams that spanned over 30 years. He was inducted into the Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2019.
The wrestling world is now in mourning with fans and wrestling superstars remembering Eaton. May he rest in peace as his legacy lives on through his four decades spent in the professional wrestling business. This news comes to us from Wrestling Inc.