Former Accrington international wrestling champion Jack Taylor has died, aged 82.
Muscleman Jack landed the British, Commonwealth and European light welterweight titles during the course of an epic 30-year career, spanning over 15,000 bouts.
He was seven times British champion, five times European King-Pin and twice Captain DuMonde, France’s version of world champion.
In his 14 years as a pro wrestler he grappled with the likes of Jackie Pallo, Johnny Saint, Jack Dempsey, Les Kellett, and Gentleman Jim Lewis.
He was also a legend as a promoter and put on shows the length of the country, spending most of his adult life in the Leicestershire area.
Jack grew up at Stone Row, Clayton-le-Moors, and was a sickly child, suffering rheumatic fever which weakened his heart when he was just 13.
After finding out that the heart could be strengthened by exercise he joined Clayton Harriers and took himself to the Blackburn YMCA gym, where he built up his fitness.
He left school at 14, and worked at the Nori brickworks in Enfield before entering the Army at 17 and rising swiftly through the ranks to Sergeant Major. He also took on the role of Army physical training instructor.
Jack had six children and numerous grandchildren from his three marriages and still has two brothers and one sister living in the borough.
Fellow former wrestler Raymond, and Betty live in Huncoat, and Douglas is from Oswaldtwistle. Another sister Jenny Brooks Taylor passed away on May 5.
Despite a knee injury ending his pro career, Jack continued to do the odd bout well into his 60s and also ran a wrestling school at his local YMCA.
He starred in his own fortnightly radio show Wrestling Chatter and penned several books, including The Sexual Exploits of a Professional Wrestler.
He also entered Hyndburn Sports Centre’s Hall of Fame back in 2005.
He carried on promoting after suffering three heart attacks in the space of 12 months when he was 71, and despite undergoing a knee replacement operation.
Jack Taylor died in Leicester Royal Hospital, on April 5, after a short illness.