When and How Did Kerry Von Erich Lose His Leg?

Jeremy Allen White as Kerry Von Erich

The Von Erich family’s narrative transcends the confines of the wrestling world, capturing the attention of many due to their unprecedented tale of losses. ‘The Iron Claw’ delves into their saga, chronicling the successive tragedies that appear almost too unfortunate and unbelievable. Jeremy Allen White’s portrayal of Kerry Von Erich in the film has received acclaim, as he skillfully brings to life a story of resilience, portraying a man determined to overcome the myriad adversities thrown his way.

Kerry Von Erich Got into a Motorcycle Accident

Fritz Von Erich played a dual role as both mentor and coach to his sons, aspiring to see them reach the pinnacle of professional wrestling. His particular focus was on his three eldest sons, David, Kevin, and Kerry. Born on February 3, 1960, Kerry showed early promise as a fighter. However, it was David who initially stood out as the star of the family. Following David’s sudden death in 1984, Kerry began to emerge as the new promising wrestler within the Von Erich family, stepping into the spotlight and carrying on the family legacy.

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In 1984, Kerry achieved a significant milestone by defeating Ric Flair and securing the NWA World Heavyweight Championship. His success propelled him into various competitions, establishing him as an emerging international star. Unfortunately, in 1986, Kerry faced a tragic turn of events when a motorcycle accident severely injured his leg and dislocated his hip. Subsequent surgery led to the difficult decision to amputate his leg. Struggling with a sense of disgrace, Kerry insisted that his family keep the amputation a secret, as revealed by his brother Kevin.

During the challenging period following David’s death, the Von Erich family, still grappling with grief, supported Kerry’s decision to keep the amputation a secret, fearing its potential impact on the family’s image. Despite the adversity, Kerry made a triumphant return to the wrestling ring, winning his comeback match and securing the Texas Heavyweight title twice. In 1990, he joined the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) and adopted the ring name “The Texas Tornado.” Throughout his tenure, Kerry maintained that his leg was improving, concealing the fact that he wore prosthetics from the company and the public eye.

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In 1991, Kerry reached a high point in his wrestling career by winning the Intercontinental Championship and participating in Wrestlemania. Despite his professional success, his personal life was unraveling. Kerry’s daughter, Hollie, revealed that the aftermath of the accident had caused a significant change in his personality. Initially prescribed for pain management, the medication eventually led to a destructive drug addiction. By 1992, his marriage had ended in divorce, and his struggles with drugs brought him into conflict with the law. Facing potential prison time after a second arrest, Kerry’s life took a tumultuous turn amid these personal and legal challenges.

On February 18, 1993, Kerry Von Erich took his own life with a single gunshot to the heart using a .44 caliber firearm at his father’s ranch in Texas. The discovery of his body was made by his father, Fritz Von Erich. In 2009, Kerry’s legacy was posthumously honored as the WWF inducted him into the WWE Hall of Fame, ensuring his contributions to the wrestling world were remembered. Kerry’s daughters, Hollie and Lacey, continue to cherish and preserve the memory of their father, keeping him alive in their hearts and memories.

Read More: Kevin Von Erich: Where is The Iron Claw Wrestler Now?