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Capt. Lou Albano

Loualbano.jpg

Miami Vice Character
Henchman ("By Hooker by Crook")
Born
July 29, 1933, Rome, Italy
Died
October 14, 2009, Carmel, New York (age 76, heart attack)
Active (Wrestling)
1953-1995


Louis Vincent Albano (July 29, 1933 - October 14, 2009) was a professional wrestler and manager, as well as part-time actor, known as Captain Lou Albano, who appeared as one of Kenneth Togaru's henchmen that killed Charles Symington and Ali Ferrand in the episode "By Hooker by Crook" of the series Miami Vice.

Wrestling Career

Albano began his wrestling career in 1953 but had no luck as a singles wrestler, but did have some tag team success, winning the WWWF (precursor to today's WWE) United States Tag Team title with partner Tony Altimore from Arnold Skaaland (later manager of WWWF Heavyweight Champion Bob Backlund) and Sprios Arion in 1967. In 1969 Albano retired as a wrestler and became a manager (at the suggestion of then-WWWF Champion Bruno Sammartino), using his mic skills and grating personality to become a manager of "heels" (bad guys), and set his sights on finding someone to dethrone Sammartino as champion. In 1971 he achieved that goal, as Ivan Koloff ended the seven-year reign (still the longest WWWF/WWE Heavyweight Title reign ever) of Sammartino. But Koloff lost the title shortly thereafter, and Albano continued managing champions, guiding Don "Magnificent" Muraco and Greg "The Hammer" Valentine to the WWF Intercontinental Championship, as well as fifteen different tag teams (including The Wild Samoans, The Moondogs, and others) to the Tag Team Championships in WWF/E. Albano was so hated he became one of the "Triumvirate of Terror" (with The Grand Wizard and "Classie" Freddie Blassie) until the Wizard's death in 1983. Albano's final tag champions were The Headshrinkers in 1994, after which he retired as an active manager.

Albano, along with singer Cyndi Lauper, became part of what was called the "Rock 'n' Wrestling Connection" in the mid 1980s, credited with bringing professional wrestling into the mainstream. Albano made cameos in two of Lauper's videos; "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun" and "Time After Time", and he began to assume full credit for Lauper's success on WWF/E television shows. The matches that followed; "The Brawl To Settle It All" and "The War to Settle the Score", were broadcast on MTV and achieved high popularity and ratings. Albano apologized "in kayfabe" to Lauper for everything after she won the "War" and turned "face" (good guy), which he remained for most of his career. In 1996 Albano was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame for his managerial career.

Acting Career

Albano appeared in several movies, including Body Slam, and TV shows, including 227 and the children's series The Super Mario Bros. Super Show as Mario.

Death

Albano had been obese most of his life, but lost 150 lbs. in 1995 after a health scare. He suffered two heart attacks after that, one in 2005, and the one that took his life on October 14, 2009 at his Carmel, New York home at the age of 76. He is survived by his wife Geri, four children, and 14 grandchildren.

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